Can Migden spend her money?

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By Tim Redmond

The Fair Political Practices Commission is investigating whether state Sen. Carole Migden violated campaign finance laws. That's not the first time a local politician has been investigated and it won't be the last, but this one has some odd and potentially very significant twists.

For one thing, Migden's campaign manager admits that the charges are "absolutely legitimate." And if one of the key allegations is true -- that Midgen illegally transfered $1 million from an Assembly race account and another $500,000 from a Board of Equalizaton race account to her state Senate campaign coffers -- then she may have a real problem. She may have to stop spending that money -- if if she did that, her financial advantage over challenger Mark Leno would evaporate.