Thursday, January 31, 2013

GOP criticizes Nixon for hypocrisy on campaign contributions

(From the Missouri Republican Party)

During his State of the State address on Monday, Jay Nixon called for campaign contribution limits, declaring that with every large check, the "public's trust erodes a little bit more." But on the very same day, Nixon took a $10,000 check from World Wide Technology Holding Co., Inc.
“State records reviewed Thursday by The Associated Press show that Nixon received $10,000 from St. Louis-based World Wide Technology Inc. on Monday, the same day that Nixon proclaimed in a televised address that large political donations were eroding the public's trust in elected officials.
“Additional state records reviewed by the AP show that World Wide Technology has been paid nearly $42 million by Missouri over the past three years under a statewide contract to provide networking services that is up for potential renewal Feb. 28…
“[S]ome Republican lawmakers suggested the contribution creates the appearance of impropriety and highlights the hypocritical nature of Nixon's call for lawmakers to reinstate "strict campaign contribution limits.”

Pay-to-play allegations have dogged Jay Nixon throughout his career:
* While he was Attorney General, Nixon was repeatedly criticized for accepting campaign contributions from entities that he was facing in court—from the tobacco industry, to Blue Cross, to his former advisor Chuck Hatfield, and more.
* In the late 1990s, then-Attorney General Nixon came under fire for outsourcing tobacco litigation to trial lawyer donors, including Tom Strong, who raked in more than $111 million in fees after just 5 months of work.
* As governor, Nixon has repeatedly rewarded campaign contributors with plum government positions.
* Last year, Nixon came under fire for receiving massive amounts of money from law firms seeking a lucrative state contract.
Please consider the following quote from Jonathon Prouty, spokesman for the Missouri GOP: “It’s not surprising that Jay Nixon has been caught saying one thing and doing another.  Throughout his career, Nixon has accepted contributions from entities he faced in court, outsourced lucrative state work to campaign donors, rewarded donors with plum government positions, and accepted huge contributions from those seeking to do business with the state.  Every time Nixon engages in pay-to-play, the public’s trust in government erodes a little bit more.”
(I have considered that quote from Jonathan Prouty and while I also see some hypocrisy, and incredibly poor timing, in Nixon's statement and contribution, I have a hard time taking such a criticism seriously when it comes to a party that is willing to try to push through anything big contributors like Rex Sinquefield and David Humphreys want.)

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