Ensign’s mistress’ salary doubled during affair

More trouble for the Nevada senator, who recently admitted an affair with a married staffer

Topics: John Ensign, War Room,

By itself, the revelation of Nevada Republican Sen. John Ensign’s affair would probably have been out of the news by now. Sex scandals are passé in the political world these days. But now there’s money involved, too.

There were already rumors that blackmail was involved in Ensign’s sudden disclosure, but a report from the Las Vegas Sun could pose more trouble for the senator. The paper reports that Ensign’s mistress, Cynthia Hampton, saw her salary for working at his political action committee double during their affair, going from about $1,400 per month to almost $2,800 in 2008 until she left the PAC not long thereafter.



Potentially further complicating matters, Hampton’s husband Doug, who worked in Ensign’s Senate office, got a $19,679 payment just before he stopped working there. He’d been making about $160,000 a year, the Sun reports. (That payment could be completely normal, it’s important to note — a severance package, for instance, or compensation for accrued leave.)

And the Hamptons’ son Brandon, was getting some money too. At 19, he was paid $5,400 for “research policy consulting” by the National Republican Senatorial Committee, which Ensign chaired at the time.

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

More Related Stories

Featured Slide Shows

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • 1 of 11
  • Close
  • Fullscreen
  • Thumbnails

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott and the friends with whom he recorded in middle school in Texas (photo courtesy of Dan Pickering)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Heatmiser publicity shot (L-R: Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson, Neil Gust, Elliott Smith) (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott and JJ Gonson (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    "Stray" 7-inch, Cavity Search Records (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott's Hampshire College ID photo, 1987

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott with "Le Domino," the guitar he used on "Roman Candle" (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Full "Roman Candle" record cover (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott goofing off in Portland (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Heatmiser (L-R: Elliott Smith, Neil Gust, Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson)(courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    The Greenhouse Sleeve -- Cassette sleeve from Murder of Crows release, 1988, with first appearance of Condor Avenue (photo courtesy of Glynnis Fawkes)

  • Recent Slide Shows

Comments

0 Comments

Comment Preview

Your name will appear as username ( settings | log out )

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href=""> <b> <em> <strong> <i> <blockquote>