Democrat challenger tries to tie Shimkus to CDC funding controversy

Democratic congressional candidate Timothy Bagwell is asking why the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — and his opponent Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.) — steered millions of dollars toward a Chicago-area nonprofit that's under investigation.

Bagwell sent an 8-page letter to Health and Human Services Inspector General Daniel Levinson on Monday requesting that the office "review and determine" whether $3.3 million awarded to the Save-A-Life Foundation were "properly administered." Bagwell also sent a letter to Shimkus last month asking him to investigate the nonprofit for which he helped secure $1.5 million in 2004 and 2005.

Save-A-Life, which provides first-aid training classes to school students, is under investigation by the Illinois Attorney General's Charitable Trusts Bureau.

Bagwell also wants the inspector general to review the relationship between the nonprofit and CDC Deputy Director Douglas Browne, who served as the nonprofit's corporate treasurer from 2004 to 2009.