Sen. David Vitter (R-La.)'s chief-of-staff has amended his personal financial disclosures to indicate that his 2010 outside earnings neared $170,000 for five months while he worked on the senator's reelection campaign.
Kyle Ruckert's original disclosure in 2011 indicated that he made $128,350 in outside income from David Vitter for U.S. Senate. But an amendment to his disclosure this year shows he was finally paid $40,000 last year as a "win bonus," bringing the total to $168,350. By comparison, Ruckert made around $98,000 in the seven months of 2010 that he worked in his official capacity.
Top congressional aides are limited in the outside income they can receive. But by taking a leave from his official Senate duties from June through November, Ruckert was no longer restricted to the $26,995 outside income cap in the calendar year.
Ruckert's disclosure about 2010 did not come until very recently. His filing covering the 2011 calendar year, initially submitted in August of this year, raised eyebrows since it suggested that Ruckert had made $46,000 from the campaign in 2011, which would exceed the outside income cap since he worked full time in 2011.
When LegiStorm asked about this potentially excess outside income, Vitter's spokesman, Luke Bolar, replied via email that Ruckert's latest disclosure was being amended to indicate that "$40,000 of the $46,000 was deferred compensation earned in 2010 when he was not employed by the Senate, but not paid until 2011." Vitter's FEC filings confirm Ruckert's latest version of events.