During the 2006 Maryland US Senate campaign, then-GOP Lieutenant Governor Michael Steele was peppered with questions about his ex-brother-in-law, Mike Tyson, when the former imprisoned rapist was seen training in one of Steele's campaign t-shirts.
Recently elected as the Republican National Committee's first African-American Chairman, Steele just can't shake his Tyson association.
Over the weekend, the NY Times published an article: New G.O.P. Chairman Defends Payment to Sister. That sister is, you guessed it, the former Mrs. Mike Tyson.
Mr. Steele did not dispute that his sister’s company, Brown Sugar Unlimited, of Bethesda, Md., had been paid $37,262 by his Senate campaign in February 2007, as federal election records show.The article points out that while technically not illegal to hire one's relative, the snafu is linked to the fact that "Monica Turner, Mr. Steele’s sister and an ex-wife of the former boxer Mike Tyson, incorporated her company in 2003 and dissolved it in 2006, before the payment by Mr. Steele’s campaign was made, according to state and federal records."
Federal law does not prohibit a candidate from hiring a relative, and Mr. Steele said in the statement that the payment was for legitimate work. The federal records indicate that the payment to Brown Sugar was for catering and Internet-related services provided in 2006.
Interestingly, the accusation was made by Steele's former finance chairman Alan B. Fabian, who "was sentenced in October to nine years in prison for his involvement in a $40 million fraud scheme, unrelated to his work on the Steele campaign."