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Here's a riddle for you: How does a guy who's been making a little under $75,000 per year and is not known to have significant family money lend his congressional campaign $355,000 out of a bank account he had never previously disclosed?

Are you stumped? You wouldn't be the only one, and yet no explanations are forthcoming from New Hampshire Republican candidate Frank Guinta -- or, no explanations other than that he previously forgot about that other personal bank account, the one with up to $500,000 in it.

Guinta, the Republican nominee in the 1st Congressional District, has drawn heat throughout the campaign after he initially failed to include a bank account between $300,000 and $500,000 in his federal campaign filings.

Calling the omission an oversight, Guinta quickly updated the filings to show that he loaned himself $245,000 for the campaign. “I made a very simple error,” he said last month in a debate leading up to the Sept. 10 primary election.

Seriously. Just an oversight, a simple error, led to him failing to report a massive (by the standards of most people making his salary) bank account which he then turned over to his campaign. And, he won't release a bank statement to show the money was there all along.

This is a guy with student loans. Which he apparently chose not to pay off with the several hundred thousand dollars he now expects us to believe he had all along. This is a guy who as a city official in Manchester has repeatedly filed financial disclosure forms.

The 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005 reports filed by then Alderman Guinta list no investments of any kind - no stock, no real estate, and no bank accounts.

So how would someone with this financial background suddenly come up with a bank account containing up to half a million dollars? Maybe there's a perfectly innocent answer, but until Guinta offers the proof of that (again, all it should take is a bank statement showing the money was there all along in his name), it's sure hard not to suspect that there's something illegal going on -- maybe a wealthy supporter giving Guinta the money to get around contribution limits?

The New Hampshire Democratic Party has filed an FEC complaint and Carol Shea-Porter is running an ad asking the obvious question. Guinta can put a stop to the speculation easily. But until he does, he should face this question every time he goes out in public and every time his campaign speaks to the media.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Mon Oct 11, 2010 at 07:40 AM PDT.

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