Romney Campaign Borrowed $20 Million to Fund Expenses

Mitt Romney’s campaign borrowed $20 million to pay for television ads and other expenses until the Republican presidential candidate was formally named his party’s nominee in late August.

The campaign has paid back $9 million of the loan, leaving $11 million remaining. Federal Election Commission reports filed Sept. 20 will show a debt of $15 million, the amount outstanding on Aug. 31, according to an aide.

The loan, first reported late yesterday by National Review Online and confirmed by a campaign official, came as the campaign was running low on primary funds in July.

Though the campaign was collecting general-election contributions, campaign-finance laws prohibited spending that money until Romney officially accepted the nomination at the party’s national convention in Tampa on Aug. 30.

“We took advantage of the law as it exists to secure this line of credit,” the National Review quoted an unidentified senior Romney aide as saying. “We were able to stay competitive in a period when we were looking at a tilted playing field.”

Four years ago, Romney loaned his campaign more than $40 million, though he has not formally used any of his personal wealth to fund his 2012 bid, said an aide.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lisa Lerer in Dallas at llerer@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jeanne Cummings at jcummings21@bloomberg.net

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