Bookout: ballin' with backers cash 


In 2012, Sen. Paul Bookout was living high on the hog, spending big on Japanese restaurants, home entertainment, clothing, liquor and home improvement. The only trouble is that he was spending a big chunk of $80,000 in campaign money to do so (during an election in which he ran unopposed — that election was in November and he kept right on spending in December). Late last week, Bookout filed a batch of amended campaign finance reports, which detail a highly questionable use of the campaign expense account. The reports show planned reimbursements of around $53,000, meaning contributors would be refunded at about 60 cents on the dollar. The state Ethics Commission reprimanded Bookout last week and fined him $8,000, citing four violations of campaign finance law. Early this week, prosecuting attorney Scott Ellington asked that a special prosecutor be named to determine whether a criminal prosecution should be pursued. Bookout thus far has shown no intention of resigning.

Some highlights from Bookout's hard-fought campaign:

12/26 Fuji Steakhouse $244.83

12/10 Brookstone 227 $185.71

10/15 Sound Concepts $8,402.47

10/2 Home Depot $389.41

10/1 Harmony Gardens (custom landscaping) $107.37

8/30 Kimono Japanese Steakhouse $140.17

8/20 Payment to himself $2,000

8/20 Shogun Japanese Steakhouse $107.79

7/30 Doe's Eat Place $169.98

7/13 Barbara Jean's (women's clothes) $350.83

7/5 Brave New Restaurant $287.13

6/25 Ridgepoint Country Club $150.00

6/4 Walmart $114.84

5/26 Poinsett Package Store $212.75

5/23 Best Buy $107.40

5/14 IO Metro (furniture) $720.21

4/30 Hibbett Sporting Goods $251.65

4/20 Loca Luna $159.08

4/4 Diamond Liquor $174.41

4/3 Dillards $250.00

3/16 Gearhead Outfitters $193.67

3/16 Steamroller Blues (women's clothes) $702.00

3/16 Payment to himself $600.00

3/14 Payment to himself $800.00

3/10 Steamroller Blues (women's clothes) $1,510.32

3/8 Delta Catfish $102.67

2/25 Apple Store $139.37

2/25 Go Running $199.63

2/25 Warren's Shoes $341.78


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