Saturday, December 20, 2003

HARTFORD, Conn. -- Gov. John G. Rowland said today his office did not influence the awarding of any state contracts, and said he has disclosed all the of the gifts he knows of receiving from employees and state contractors.

"This governor, and I'm sure other governors in the past, do not call commissioners. We do not try to influence contracts," Rowland said during a news conference. "We have never done that. I have never done that. Period."

Rowland's office released a statement Thursday night that showed he was in a real estate partnership in the late 1990s with three friends, including a state contractor. That paving contractor received about $1.3 million worth of work during Rowland's nine-year tenure. Last week Rowland admitted that some improvements to his summer cottage in Litchfield were paid for by friends and major state contractors, some of whom have been subpoenaed as part of a federal corruption investigation.

Y'know, back when I was running the school newspaper, the last article and editorial I wrote focused on fathead John G. insulting the three thousand state workers he'd just laid off, calling them stupid, lazy and in all ways incompetent (I'm paraphrasing; hunt down the May 20, 2003 edition of the NCC Voice if you'd like exact quotes). This after eight, nine years of financial mismanagement, undertaxing the rich and handing out unrecoverable $250 million loans to Enron, putting the state in its current lamentable fiscal shortfall.

I'd like to think that this'll be the one that takes him down, but I doubt it. John G. grew up poor in Waterbury, beat his way to the top with backdoor deals and shady bullshit and has dirt or the favor of most of the wealthy and influential people in CT. There's a reporter named A.J. O'Connell, working for the Norwalk Hour who's been trying to get some shit on him for a while. Hopefully, with this one, she'll be able to pull it all together.

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