It should be clearly understood that Musgrove has not been accused of any wrongdoing. He accepted a legal campaign contribution under federal and state law. There is nothing to indicate he knew the money was obtained illegally, nor did he have any direct connection over the project that would create a “quid pro quo” necessary for it to be a crime.
Of course, his name is being dragged through the mud. Just mentioning a public official’s name in connection with the controversial beef plant is damaging. Taxpayers are livid over the $55 million thrown away on the ill- conceived project. Add to the fact that Musgrove, a Democrat, is in a close race with Republican Interim-Sen. Roger Wicker for the open Senate seat makes it more damaging. (The timing this close to the election is curious.)
But, forget all of the politics, the legal details and even the foul odor from the beef plant. It raises the age-old question of campaign cash and motives.
I doubt that those who give big money to politicians are simply interested in good government. I am not saying they are bribing or seeking a specific action (quid pro quo), but they do seek access and/or influence.