Tags: Immigration | Senate | midterms | South Dakota | visas | FBI

Visa Inquiry May Hurt GOP's Mike Rounds in SD Senate Race

By    |   Thursday, 23 October 2014 07:46 AM

The senatorial prospects of Republican former governor Mike Rounds may have been hurt by FBI's confirmation that the bureau is continuing its investigation into South Dakota's EB-5 visa program, The Washington Post reported.

The FBI Minneapolis Division Chief Counsel Kyle Loven tersely acknowledged an "active"  investigation into how the federal program — intended to bring foreign capital into the United States by setting aside green cards for immigrants who invest in companies that create local jobs— was administered in South Dakota.

Until now, the bureau had neither confirmed nor denied the inquiry was ongoing.

"The silence has led some to wonder if the investigation had been shut down," according to the Argus Leader.

The investigation centers on the South Dakota Regional Center, which manages the state's participation in the EB-5 program.

Richard Benda
, who as South Dakota secretary for Tourism and Economic Development ran the program while Rounds was governor, committed suicide while he was under investigation for allegedly channeling $550,000 to himself from the program.

As governor, Rounds had signed off on a deal engineered by Benda with a beef company whose investors the secretary worked for after he left government.

Democrats have portrayed Rounds as tied to what they have characterized as a "Citizenship for sale scheme," according to The Post.

Rounds, the front-runner, has been losing traction in recent polls. His primary opponents are Democrat Rick Weiland and independent Larry Pressler.

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The Senate prospects of Republican former governor Mike Rounds may have been hurt by FBI's confirmation that the bureau is continuing its investigation into South Dakota's EB-5 visa program, The Washington Post reported.
Senate, midterms, South Dakota, visas, FBI
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2014-46-23
Thursday, 23 October 2014 07:46 AM
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