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Do contributions influence officials?

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October 28, 2002

Albany-- State regulators have collected big chunks of their campaign contributions from the same industries they oversee.

Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine got 48% of his campaign money from people connected to insurers and loan providers.

Oxendine says incumbents always get campaign donations, but that does not influence his job. "I really don't pay attention to what a bunch of insurance people think or don't think. Because they don't have the votes. It's the average man on the street, and that's who I work for, and that's who I care about."

Agriculture Commissioner Tommy Irvin got a quarter of his contributions from people in industries he regulates. The regulated businesses cannot donate to campaigns, but individuals who work for those businesses can.

posted at 4:50PM by dave.miller@walb.com

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