Sen. Bill NelsonClarence (Bill) William NelsonNASA, SpaceX and the private-public partnership that caused the flight of the Crew Dragon Lobbying world The most expensive congressional races of the last decade MORE (D-Fla.) on Saturday indicated that he would donate $10,000 that his campaign received during his 2012 Senate run from a political group belonging to former Sen. Al FrankenAlan (Al) Stuart FrankenPolitical world mourns loss of comedian Jerry Stiller Maher to Tara Reade on timing of sexual assault allegation: ‘Why wait until Biden is our only hope?’ Democrats begin to confront Biden allegations MORE (D-Minn.).
“Sen. Nelson made clear to his campaign today that any money received from former Sen. Al Franken was to be donated to charity, not just for the 2018 race, but also any contribution from the 2012 race as well,” campaign spokesman Ryan Brown told The Hill.
His campaign issued the statement after CNN reported Saturday that the campaign had donated $10,000 that it received during the 2018 election cycle from Franken’s PAC to a charity in Florida but was declining to donate a separate $10,000 donation from his 2012 Senate run.
Nelson joined a wave of other Democrats last year saying he would donate money received from Franken’s Midwest Values PAC after sexual misconduct allegations emerged against the Minnesota Democrat, eventually forcing his resignation from the Senate.
The campaign did not specify the amount at the time.
“Sen. Nelson donated all the money that he received for this campaign from Sen. Franken to charity,” Brown had told CNN earlier Saturday.
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Several other senators who took money in the past from Midwest Values PAC — including Sens. Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillMissouri county issues travel advisory for Lake of the Ozarks after Memorial Day parties Senate faces protracted floor fight over judges amid pandemic safety concerns Amash on eyeing presidential bid: ‘Millions of Americans’ want someone other than Trump, Biden MORE (D-Mo.) and Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterSenate confirms Trump’s watchdog for coronavirus funds Montana barrels toward blockbuster Senate fight The 10 Senate seats most likely to flip MORE (D-Mont.) — gave back donations from the PAC dating several election cycles upon the news of the allegations facing Franken.
Nelson is locked in a tight reelection battle against Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R), who is seeking to unseat the vulnerable Democratic senator in November. The race is considered one of the tightest in the country.
A poll of the Florida Senate race in early September found the race tied, with both candidates earning 49 percent of the vote while Nelson holds a clear lead among independent voters.
This story was updated to reflect the Nelson campaign’s statement to The Hill