Missouri Republican Senate candidate Todd Akin says it's a
"conflict of interest and a breach of trust" with voters that the
husband of Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill (D) was enriched from
federal low-income housing contracts that she approved while in
According to The Associated Press, McCaskill's
financial reports show her husband, Joseph Shepard, earned between
$400,000 and $2.6 million from his businesses that received almost
$40 million in federal payments from 2007-2011. McCaskill voted for
some of the bills that funded the federal housing and agriculture
departments, which provide the housing subsidies.
Perry Akin, Todd Akin's son who is serving as campaign manager,
agrees with his father's assessment of the situation.
"Trust is a big deal here. We really feel like if you're going
to go to Washington and make a lot of decisions that impact our
families, impact the jobs that we hold, then we expect that you do
that in a way that's honorable and transparent," Akin insists. "And
certainly, this is an indicator that that hasn't been the
He goes on to point out that the candidates' differences are
emerging on the campaign trail.
"Obviously the policy differences come forward, but also you
start to see a candidate's character," the campaign manager notes.
"This is one of those cases where we're starting to see a window
into [McCaskill's] character, and I think a lot of people in
Missouri are going to be very concerned about this view that they
see of her character."
Meanwhile, Senator McCaskill claims that many of those housing
contracts existed before she won the election in 2006 and that much
of the income came from non-government sources.