While her nephew occupies a million dollar house and reported income of more than $4 million last year, Obama's Aunt Zeituni Onyango lives in public housing in Boston, hiding out from immigration authorities who denied her request for asylum from Kenya 4 years ago.
A statement given to the AP by Obama's campaign said, "Senator Obama has no knowledge of her status but obviously believes that any and all appropriate laws be followed." Traveling with Obama in Nevada, campaign strategist David Axelrod declined to elaborate on the statement, but said: "I think people are suspicious about stories that surface in the last 72 hours of a national campaign."
The campaign said it was returning $260 that Onyango had contributed in small increments to Obama's presidential bid over several months. Federal election lawBoston Housing Authority and last gave $5 on Sept. 19. prohibits foreigners from making political donations. Onyango listed her employer as the
Onyango, 56, is part of Obama's large paternal family, with many related to him by blood whom he never knew growing up.
Ordinarily I'd give Obama the benefit of the doubt. But here is a situation where a relative gave him several donations - illegal donations - and his campaign accepted them. This proves to anyone willing to make the connection that Obama's fund raising apparatus is horribly flawed and probably deliberately so. It would take an army of FEC investigators several years to cull through Obama's $620 million in donations in order to get to the bottom of the fraud, abuse, and illegality.
On top of that, are we also to believe that his aunt never contacted him, that he didn't know she was in the country? One would think that at the very least she would use his name during her asylum fight. Or maybe to tap him for some money?
We'll see how this plays out over the next few days but my instinct says unless something else is discovered - Obama helping to keep her whereabouts secret for instance - this will be a blip on the campaign radar and won't change too many votes.