GOP candidate's campaign donations went illegally over limit

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Republican Burgess Owens is refunding and reallocating illegal campaign donations that went above contribution limits.

The former football player challenging first-term Congressman Ben McAdams collected about $135,000 in excess contributions, the New York Times reported Tuesday.

The news comes shortly after he raised a large $2.5 million haul between July and October.

Owens has had more than 50,000 donors, many of whom donated electronically, so excess contributions can happen “without the campaign’s knowledge,” said spokesman Jesse Ranney. “This isn’t unusual and is common practice,” he said.

The Federal Election Commission ’s legal limit on campaign contributions is $2,800 per individual.

McAdams campaign, though, said it was part of “a pattern of financial mismanagement.”

Campaign manager Andrew Roberts said, “It’s clear he has taken illegal donations that he cannot spend. He should come clean and refund all the money he is holding illegally.”

McAdam’s predecessor, Republican Mia Love, also faced criticism for improperly accepting campaign contributions for a primary even though she didn’t face a competitor.