Democratic gubernatorial candidates John DeStefano and Dan Malloy continued to hit Rell hard on the issue, saying that the suspension was not enough.
Today’s suspension of the governor’s chief of staff for two weeks amounts to a holiday vacation and still does not address what the Governor knew and when she knew it about illegal fundraising on her behalf by her chief of staff and one half dozen of her commissioners. (DeStefano Press Release, 12/16/05)
The suspension of the Governor's Chief of Staff is a step in the right direction, but there is much more that Governor Rell must do. Specifically, there are two other actions the Governor should take, immediately: First, the Governor needs to explain publicly what role Special Counsel for Ethics Compliance Rachel Rubin played in this whole matter. ... Second, the Governor needs to provide the Chief State's Attorney's office with every piece of relevant information that exists that is in any way, shape, or form related to this matter, including a list of names of everyone who appeared at the fundraiser in question. (Malloy Press Release: 12/16/05)
Rachel Rubin's role in all this is still murky. If she's spposed to be in charge of ethics compliance... why hasn't she said or apparently done anything? The system is apparently still broken.
Why didn't Rell suspend Moody at once instead of waiting until today? It's as if her office has been paralyzed since this broke on Wednesday. A two-week suspension is also kind of a weak punishment, especially during a time of the year when nothing major is happening. That, and the fact that Moody was the one who determined the punishment, not Rell, makes Rell seem weak and indecisive.
The best the Rell team can hope for is that Moody is quickly found to have been the only one who committed any violations. She'd get slapped with some sort of unremarkable fine, and then life would go on as normal. Moody might find herself on the sidelines a little more, but nothing too terrible would happen.
The worst...? Who can say? It depends on whether Rell or other staff members knew anything about this.
Regardless, Rell needs to start taking decisive steps now if she doesn't want to watch her 77% approval ratings and her huge lead in the governor's race melt away.