U.S. Rep. Kevin Hern has paid only $30,000 toward a $650,000 campaign loan made last year by a bank that Hern helped create and govern.
The loan was made by Firstar Bank in June 2018 and did not require Hern to pledge any collateral.
Federal election law allows candidates to take out bank loans to finance campaigns if the terms are no more favorable than loans to other borrowers of comparable creditworthiness and repayment is assured.
Hern, a Tulsa Republican, is serving his first term in Congress.
In other news, it takes $650,000 to win a House seat in Tulsa.
Under the original terms, full payment on the campaign loan was due by June 26, according to the bank document submitted to the Federal Election Commission.
Hern’s campaign made more than $26,000 in interest payments but did not pay toward the principal until May, when it made two payments of $10,000 each; another payment of $10,000 was made in June. All interest and principal payments were made using campaign contributions, which is a legal and typical means of repaying campaign loans.
According to a document provided to The Oklahoman, the terms of the Firstar loan were changed on June 25 to make the principal due in June 2020. The new loan terms raised the interest rate from 5 percent to 6 percent.
Maybe another freshman rep, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, will support a pay raise for Hern.