A political motion committee supporting U.S. Sen. John Kennedy has refunded a $25,000 donation from nursing house magnate Bob Dean after Dean got here underneath fireplace for evacuating greater than 800 of his nursing house residents to a Tangipahoa Parish warehouse for Hurricane Ida, the place state officers say they had been residing in inhumane situations.
The scandal has prompted each Gov. John Bel Edwards and Louisiana Legal professional Common Jeff Landry to open investigations into what went improper. The state has revoked Dean’s seven nursing house licenses, shut down the nursing properties and terminated his Medicaid supplier agreements.
However earlier than Dean turned identified for the nursing house evacuation, he was a prolific donor throughout each side of the political aisle.
Hurricane Ida has helped make Bob Dean a family title in south Louisiana — for all of the improper causes.
He donated $25,000 in June to the Conservative Louisiana political motion committee, which helps Kennedy, who’s a Republican.
The PAC initiated a refund of Dean’s donations final week, in response to its treasurer, Charlie Spies.
Although the PAC helps Kennedy, his spokesperson stated that “contributions to the Conservative Louisiana PAC don’t go to Sen. Kennedy, nor does he direct their distribution.”
Dean claimed in a single textual content to Louisiana Division of Well being officers that Kennedy was “calling everybody that’s potential to cease you from disturbing my Covid free” residents. A Kennedy spokesperson acknowledged that the senator’s workplace had made inquiries about Dean’s sufferers, however stated Dean had “contacted Sen. Kennedy’s workplace earlier than the general public or the senator’s workplace was conscious of the nursing house situations.”
Louisiana well being officers introduced Tuesday that they’re revoking Bob Dean’s seven nursing-home licenses after he evacuated greater than 800 nu…
“Following that contact, Sen. Kennedy’s workplace was involved for the nursing house sufferers and reached out to the Louisiana Division of Well being to inquire concerning the welfare of these sufferers,” the spokesperson added. “At no time did the workplace advocate for Mr. Dean or anybody apart from sufferers and households, which our workplace has labored to reunite since studying of this matter.”
Dean had beforehand donated $5,000 to Kennedy in 1999.
He has additionally supported Louisiana’s governor and the governor’s brother, each Democrats. Dean additionally touted connections to the governor when LDH inspectors visited the warehouse earlier than shutting it down and evacuating the 800-plus residents staying there.
Dean contributed $42,500 to John Bel Edwards throughout his second gubernatorial run and $7,500 to the governor’s brother, Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff Daniel Edwards.
A spokesperson for the governor wouldn’t reply Thursday when requested whether or not he would additionally return any of Dean’s political contributions, saying as a substitute that Edwards “stays one hundred pc centered on the response to Hurricane Ida and the COVID pandemic.”
“He is not pondering in any respect about marketing campaign donations and fundraising, aside from with regards to ensuring the individuals of Louisiana have the restoration funds they want,” stated Christina Stephens, a spokesperson for the governor.
The nursing properties proprietor who left almost 850 of his sufferers in an unsanitary warehouse following Hurricane Ida has been a beneficiant supporter o…
In whole, Dean has contributed no less than $289,000 to political candidates since 1994 via his personal title and thru dozens of corporations that he owns, in response to an evaluation from the Louisiana Illuminator. He made the vast majority of these donations between 1999 to 2007. From 2008 to 2018, state information don’t present him making any donations, the information group reported.
He began again up once more in 2019, when he donated to Edwards.