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Audubon native’s FBI file details probe of Carter donations


February 10th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – Newly released FBI memos detail a sensitive investigation into fundraising in the Carter White House that started with a comparison to Watergate but fizzled after uncovering no criminal wrongdoing.  The memos were released from the file of Charles Manatt, an Iowa native and top Democratic Party official who was interviewed during the investigation. The records became public after Manatt, who grew up on an Audubon farm and graduated from Iowa State University, died last year in Virginia at age 75.
Experts say the memos provide an intriguing look at one of the first major campaign finance investigations after Watergate. FBI agents investigated whether Carter or his aides improperly solicited donations from prominent business leaders during a White House meeting, but found no evidence to support an anonymous source’s claim.