A prominent Democratic politician and megadonor in Maine was arrested and charged with possession of child pornography, but his bail was set at only $50,000.
75-year-old Eliot Cutler was arrested on Friday and charged with four counts of possession of unlawful sexually explicit materials related to subjects under the age of 12 years old, according to News Center Maine.
A two-month investigation led police to conduct a search at two of Cutler’s residences earlier in the week.
He previously worked for the Carter administration in the 1970s in the Office of Management and Budget. He has also worked for the office of Maine Sen. Ed Muskie, also a Democrat.
Cutler ran for governor in Maine in 2010 and 2014, both times as an independent candidate.
Cutler was held on a $50,000 bail at Hancock County Jail and was expected to appear in court on Monday. Each of the four counts carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.
District attorney Matthew J. Foster said that more charges were expected to be filed against Cutler.
“Return his donations immediately”
Following Cutler’s arrest, Maine GOP Executive Director Jason Savage called on Democrats who have received donations from the fundraising efforts of Cutler to return them.
“Eliot Cutler is a benefactor of Maine Democratic Party candidates and has traveled in elite Democrat circles for many decades,” Savage said in an email statement. “His beneficiaries nationwide need to return his donations immediately. This needs to start here in Maine, today.”
The Maine GOP account on Twitter posted many of Cutler’s donations, including those made to President Joe Biden, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), and former President Barack Obama.
Cutler reportedly made donations to Democratic politicians in Maine as well as the state Democratic parties in New Hampshire, Wisconsin, Ohio, Colorado, Iowa, Virginia, Nevada, and Florida.