Friday, July 07, 2006

Moody-Gate

The Courant editorial board notices that something is amiss:

A governor who touts ethics in government as one of her highest priorities wouldn't be expected to throttle an ethics investigation in its crib. But that's exactly what Gov. M. Jodi Rell is trying to do by chastising Democrats who ask questions about the misconduct of her chief of staff, M. Lisa Moody.
...
We can imagine the likes of John Rowland or Lyndon Johnson or Richard Nixon trying to short-circuit an investigation of an aide. But not a governor who has staked her reputation on delousing state government after the scandal-plagued administration of her predecessor.
...
An ethics-first governor should not try to quash an inquiry behind the scenes. Could it be that Mrs. Rell is just another politician?


Go read the entire thing.

The most disturbing part to me is the inference that Governor Rell is trying to quash the investigation by threatening House Speaker Amann and Senator Meyer. If she knows of improprieties in the offices of Democrats, she should have them investigated, not use them to sidestep her own ethical issues. To me, that means she is covering up two (or more?) abuses.

Is anyone else tired of our state being known as Corrupticut?

32 comments:

Chris MC said...

Lisa Moody consciously decided to ignore the ethics, and play poker with the legality, of distributing fundraising invitations and instructing her subordinates to do so. She more or less got away with that.

Now we know that she undeniably misled - and quite possibly committed perjury before - the GAE Committee, and Governor Rell's actions tell us plainly that this is a serious problem for the Rell Administration.

Rell's personal involvement in trying to suppress Legislative attempts to perform their proper oversight function cannot be justified on grounds of political partisanship.

Threatening the Speaker of the House and the Chairman of the GAE with disclosure of wrongdoing demonstrates just how cynical the Governor really is about "ethics" in Hartford. If the Governor has such knowledge, Speaker Amman doesn't appear to be worried about it. Either the Speaker doesn't know, or is willing to let the chips fall where they may. Not so Mrs. Rell.

One of two things is true about Governor Rell:
1. She has personal knowledge of wrongdoing in the capitol but, because of her desire to avoid a pitched investigation of her Administration, beginning with her Chief of Staff, she has kept quiet about it. So she is knowingly withholding information of wrongdoing both in her office and without.
2. She has no personal knowledge of wrongdoing in the capitol outside her office but, because of her desire to avoid a pitched investigation of her Administration, beginning with her Chief of Staff, she is abusing her office in a vain attempt to strongarm the Legislature into neglecting its oversight function.

At a minimum, two inferences are unavoidable:
1. Lisa Moody is guilty.
2. Governor Jodi Rell knows it.

If Governor Jodi Rell has personal knowledge of wrongdoing outside her office and hasn't reported the violations then, regardless of party affiliation, she is personally and directly involved in conspiring to coverup violations outside her office, as well as attempting to quash the investigation of Lisa Moody, Rell's Chief of Staff.

What does Jodi Rell know, how does she know it, and when did she find out?

At issue now are fundamental questions about Rell's integrity, veracity, and possibly her criminality as the occupant of the Governor's mansion.

A Different Anonymous (No! Really!) said...

That's three posts of the same lame trope, Chris. Keep selling it. No one's buying.

Patricia Rice said...

Who is Jodi Rell think she is kidding? If she knows about any more corruption she is protecting her Republican friends. She would have no reason to protect corrupt Democrats and I'm not saying that there are no corrupt Democrats but I will bet you for every Joe Ganim there are 20 John Rowlands.

If she really wants to clean up government she should start in her own office. If she knows any corrupt Democrats than let's hear some names. My guess is she has none and it's all smoke and mirrors.

Authentic Connecticut Republican said...

Patricia Rice said... " I will bet you for every Joe Ganim there are 20 John Rowlands."

That hasn't been my experience.

I take it you've never served on a land-use board or commission of any kind where the money and favors can flow rather freely.

Not that that sort of nonsense is common thank heavens, but what I witnessed over a period of a couple decades was pretty much 50-50 with neither party (not that land use panels should be partisn in the first place) having any sort of "franchise" on misbehavior.

To start in with the;
"Well I know that Joe Doaks did that but look at what Joe Blow did!"
will get no one anywhere fast and is counter productive to putting a stop to such shenanigans.

Authentic Connecticut Republican said...

Chris MC said... "
Lisa Moody consciously decided to ignore the ethics..."


Yet you have decided to ignore facts.

A year old memo (easily legitimately forgotten) is forwarded to the press but not to Republican members of the same committee.

Seems to me that Caruso has a problem with ethics, manners, common decency and protocol to boot.

Chris MC said...

ACR -

Moody is the Chief of Staff to the Governor, her handwriting is on the memo, and she knowingly skirted the legalities and violated the ethics.

That isn't the issue. The issue is Rell's confirmation of Moody's guilt and attempt to quash the investigation by threatening disclosure of information implicating people outside her office, apparently referring to something the Speaker's staff did.

Either she has such information and has been withholding it in a tacit quid pro quo that the Speaker doesn't recognize, or she doesn't have it and is simply trying to bluff and bully the Legislature.

The former is more serious than the latter, but neither is consistent with her rhetoric about ethics. Both are consistent with an accidental "Governor" who learned the worst that John Rowland had to teach about governing.

ct_husky said...

To me, there's no question that Caruso has handled the situation rather poorly. He definitely comes across as a bit of a blow-hard, but the "secret caucus" didn't help either. On the flip side though, the Republicans have not made it easy for any type of bi-partisian work to be accomplished. The fact that Bob Ward immediately called the situation a "partisan witchunt" (or something to that effect) only made the situation more ridiculous than it had to be. In the end, both "sides" are just as guilty at perpetuating the hype over this whole ordeal. Just once, would it kill people to diregard those little Ds and Rs after their name and work together???

Authentic Connecticut Republican said...

Chris MC said... "her handwriting is on the memo"

From over a YEAR ago

Can you imagine how many memos she's handled in that time?

It must be over a 1000.

Charley Monagan said...

As the one who coined the word "Corrupticut" back in early 2004, I must say that I take a somewhat perverse pride of authorship as I see it used more and more often. If Pat Riley could copyright "three-peat," I wonder if . . .

Patricia Rice said...

Rell attempting to quash an investigation is huge news especially by trying to bully people and threatening to expose others. That's B.S. If she really has knoweldge of any wrong doing doesn't she have an obligation to expose it? is J.R. for John Rowland or is J.R. for Jodi Rell

Right now, I can't tell the difference and voters still have 4 months to find that out. My prediction, her approval rating is going to plunge once this entire story gets out!

The True Gentleman said...

Charley Monagan, you coined the term "Corrupticut" back in early 2004, huh? I seem to recall a March 2003 by Paul von Zielbauer of the New York Times using the term...

The True Gentleman said...

And seriously, Chris MC. The same post three times makes for boring reading...but maybe you forgot that you authored the other two posts you made...you know, it being so long ago.

Chris MC said...

Sure she has ACR. It is a likely story. Just not one that holds up, if you believe that Jodi Rell puts any real emphasis on ethics and changing the status quo in Hartford.

If your argument is that Rell has been cravenly pandering and co-opting the campaign finance and ethics issues for political advantage, so be it. That doesn't excuse the behavior on Moody's part, and only emphasizes the fact that one of two things is true, Rell has information she is not acting on or she has no information and is leaning on the Legislature in a most Rowlandesque manner.

So far, you have attempted only to change the subject, not address the Governor's misbehavior.

Charley Monagan said...

Damn! I guess I should have done some research before making such a claim.

CTKnows said...

What's next cigars and hot tubs?

Not Al Gore said...

That's okay, Charley. We still have you to thank for inventing the internets!

Anonymous said...

BOTTOM LINE: This memo wasn't an order for more pens, instructions on how to send an email, or any of the normal chatter one sends memos on. This particular memo was the touchstone of this administration, outlining the 'high' standards by which Governor Rell's personnel would hold themselves--drawing a clear distinction with her predecessor. As her chief lieutenant, I would expect that Lisa Moody would not only have drafted the memo, but been an integral force behind its tenets. And in that respect I DO find it impossible to believe that she dismissed it and its content as she would any of the other "thousand" memos.

Derby Conservative said...

Anonymous said:
This memo wasn't an order for more pens, instructions on how to send an email, or any of the normal chatter one sends memos on.

You obviously have no idea what the gevoernor's chief of staff does. She's the governor's right hand, involved with setting policy and making political decision such as whether or not to veto the latest piece of junk legislation from the CGA. I can assure you that she does not instruct anyone on how to send an email or order office supplies. Your statement really was very ignorant.

ctblogger said...

Malloy and DeStefano should be pounding Rell over Moody. They should be blasting her in the news everyday.

and for the life of me, I can't understand why the media is not more aggressive in this story. After the scandals of John Rowland and Ernest Newton, you would think that in an election year, the press would be a tad more aggressive in covering scandals like this one...I mean this all started back in December of last year.

Should the blogs lead the charge...maybe. I know for myself (former journalist), that this is the type of hard-news story that required full-time attention wihch can only be done effectively by a reporter. The only person I've seen who has been consistantly on the case regarding this story is probably Christine Stuart of CTNewsJunkie...that's it.

Why is Rell getting a free pass? Shouldn't the media (and the voters of CT) be asking harder questions from our leaders in government post-Rowland.

My two cents...

Anonymous said...

Why is Mrs.Clean covering up Democratic foul play if it really does exist? Who is she really protecting?

Authentic Connecticut Republican said...

Chris MC said... "...
believe that Jodi Rell puts any real emphasis on ethics ...
"


I've known Jodi Rell and Lisa Moody both for 20 years; and I know how Jodi is regarding ethics.

My trust in her is 110%

Anonymous said...

Lisa Moody had the chance to do the right thing and admit her guilt. But like everyone associated with this Rowland/Rell group she has become another liar I also heard or read somewhere that another Rowland Crook Christine Ragalia quit her State job that she got after resigning from DCF.

The State Of Connecticut needs to vote out Rowland/Rell which is now Rell/Fedele and elect Dan Malloy and Mary Glassman in November.

Dan Malloy offers a vision while Jodi Rell is a continuation of John Rowland. The names have changed But yet they stay the same just in different jobs.

CTKnows said...

ACR.. odd that you mention you have known Jodi and Lisa twenty years yet you only trust Jodi 110%. What does that say about Lisa?

I've been around the both myself for more than a few years and I witnessed some grey areas.

Jodi can't portray herself as the ethics Gov without being squeaky clean and few if any pols ,D or R, around that long can withstand the scrutiny. She’s had a free pass from the media for far too long. Let’s see how different the Rell/Moody Team really is? Vacations? Gifts? Pat & Paddi? Peppercorns?

Authentic Connecticut Republican said...

CTKnows said... "
you only trust Jodi 110%. What does that say about Lisa?
"

She loyal to a fault; and doesn't make me the slightest bit nervous.

Both of them do make a few members of the party a little edgy as they're (Jodi / Lisa) not putting up with the usual nonsense. This has in turn had a negative effect on some peoples abilty to "earn" (using the term loosely) a living.

There have been numerous attempts from within the party to derail them by some pretty horrible characters.

I'm not entirely convinced that "Moody-gate" isn't just another one.

FrankS said...

With the Courant Editorial writers now showing some interest, Moody will leave her position before Rell gets deeper into the debate with Caruso and Meyer. Rell can only lose in this exchange and her campaign is the big picture.

Sadly, Rell's pledge for an inspection and truck safety programs seems lost and forgotten.

Anonymous said...

"I've known Jodi Rell and Lisa Moody both for 20 years; and I know how Jodi is regarding ethics.
My trust in her is 110%"

spoken like a true republican. ETHICS? Sounds like they're NOWHERE in play in this scenario.
I'll bet Jodi even has a stupid nickname for Moody.. "Big Lisa" or "Tank" or something like that.

Brass Anon said...

ACR said: "I've known Jodi Rell and Lisa Moody both for 20 years; and I know how Jodi is regarding ethics.

My trust in her is 110%"

Jodi may still have some strengths with voters, but ethics ain't it. Ethical lapses are her most obvious weakness. Them is just the facts.

Brassett said...

Charley Monagan may not have coined the term "Corrupticut," but he wrote "The Neurotic's Handbook," one of the funniest books ever written.

Anonymous said...

What does it say about the Democrats that Chris Caruso, who is leading the charge against Moody, is not the endorsed Democratic candidate for election?

Caruso had to petition to get on the August primary ballot. The endorsed candidate is Tom McCarthy, a Bridgeport City Councilman who is employed as an attorney by the city. In more than five years on council, he has voted with Fabrizi 95 percent of the time.

So Malloy and DeStefano let Fabrizi walk on the ethical issue of drug use, and then let Fabrizi's machine run roughshod on Rell's most potent critic.

It makes no sense, and old John Bailey would probably be aghast.

Chris MC said...

Bridgeport's internecine affairs don't mean a damn thing on this issue. What is significant is that not one single Republican voice has articulated an argument of any kind defending Jodi Rell's actions (I trust her doesn't count).

The Governor is either withholding material knowledge of wrongdoing, or not.

If so, she is complicit in a cover-up, the extent of which we can only speculate about.

If not, she is guilty of attempting to strong-arm the Legislature into neglecting its oversight responsibilities, if not outright impeding their investigation.

Either way, she is certainly in violation of the spirit of the ethics rules she purports to advocate, cynically protecting Lisa Moody's gaming of the fundraising rules.

John Rowland must be laughing his ass off.

Anonymous said...

Better yet in Corrupticut!!!!!!

Lets keep Rell and The GOP in for 4 more years and see How bad this state will be by 2010.

Anonymous said...

anon 5;40pm

Dannel got a list of recommended contractors for home improvement to share? Maybe he can help ol Johnny get the shack on Bantam Lake ready to sell