Landrieu, a Louisiana Democrat, was re-elected to the Senate last year.
Adding to the intrigue is a 2007 episode in which Landrieu won a $2 million earmark for a literacy program, just days after receiving hefty campaign contributions from executives for the company that benefited. CREW had lodged a complaint with the Senate Ethics committee, and was informed just last week that Landrieu had been cleared of wrong-doing. That led the watchdog group to wonder whether the donation was connected to that probe.
But Landrieu's campaign has categorically denied that the two things were linked. The problem is, it won't say what did prompt the donation. "The concern is that these are private citizens who in most instances may not have done anything wrong," a lawyer for the campaign told The Huffington Post. "So to throw them in an article that scratches an itch that CREW has isn't fair."
That's not an excuse that's likely to hold up for long. When a campaign suddenly gives over $25,000 to the government, and won't say why, it can expect to deal with more than one day of questions. We'll keep you posted.