The GOP race for U.S. representative of the 15th District is already heating up, as questions have been raised regarding campaign spending.

Sen. Kyle McCarter
Sen. Kyle McCarter

According to the Southern Illinoisan newspaper, State Sen. Kyle McCarter spent more than $33,000 on a campaign consultant in the four months before he announced his bid for Congress against Republican U.S. Rep. John Shimkus.

The publication admits that while that kind of spending isn’t unusual in the lead-up to a run for political office, the Republican from Lebanon tapped his state campaign account for the consulting work — a move that experts say likely would be prohibited under federal campaign laws if the work went toward his race for Congress.

Retired University of Illinois-Springfield political scientist Kent Redfield says the move looks questionable and he thinks it raises legitimate questions, certainly looking like something that needs some airing.

McCarter, however, says he’s done nothing wrong, insisting the expenditure is not related to his run for Congress.

Redfeild explains that money used to run a federal campaign has to be raised under the federal rules. Therefore funds in a state campaign account cannot be spent on a federal campaign.

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