UPDATE: Campaign finance panel wants AG opinion on Cooper's $120K fine

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- The Registry of Election Finance wants to wait for a legal opinion before considering whether to reduce a record campaign finance fine against former state Sen. Jerry Cooper.

The panel wants the attorney general to weigh in on whether it has the authority to impose the $120,000 fine it gave to the Morrison Democrat.

Cooper, who is not challenging the basis for the fine, wrote 23 checks from his campaign account to his personal account worth about $94,000. The question is whether each check can considered for a separate $10,000 fine, or whether all the checks should count as a single violation.

Cooper resigned from the Senate last week.

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