Campaign Bus Trouble Continues for Alison Lundergan Grimes

Bus being operated without proper permits
Alison Lundergan Grimes (D-KY) relaxes on her campaign bus / AP

Alison Lundergan Grimes (D-KY) relaxes on her campaign bus / AP

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The Alison Lundergan Grimes campaign bus that was revealed to be owned by her father’s company and rented at a discount price to the campaign in apparent violation of campaign finance laws, is also being illegally used as a charter bus, according to the Courier-Journal.

The company that owns the bus does not have any of the required permits for transporting people.

According to a search of a U.S. Department of Transportation database, Signature Special Events Services, a subsidiary of The Lundergan Group that owns the bus, is certified only to haul equipment in its vehicles and not people. The same is true of The Lundergan Group.

Furthermore, a search of a list of companies certified by the state Transportation Cabinet to transport passengers by taxi, limousine, or bus doesn’t list any Lundergan companies.

The company that owns the bus is a catering company, and so far the bus it purchased has solely been used by the Grimes campaign.

Lundergan’s business generally deals with catering—everything from weddings at his historic Carrick House in Lexington to feeding thousands of emergency workers daily at the scenes of national disasters across the country. He also owns Huge Jass Burgers, a restaurant in Lexington.

But last summer, as Grimes was launching her race to unseat McConnell, Signature Special Events Services bought a used tour bus from a Nashville, Tenn., company. The Grimes campaign paid to wrap the bus with her photograph and campaign logo and now takes the 45-foot long, 10-seat bus to use as a backdrop for events across the state.

A complaint has been filed by the Republican Party of Kentucky to the Federal Election Committee calling for an investigation into whether the campaign paid below market value to rent the bus.