Thursday, November 29, 2007

Van Hollen's WMC conflict

Annette Ziegler is scheduled to hear a tax case partially funded by her political benefactor, Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce. WMC spent more than $2 million to help get her elected.

The JS reports:

Ziegler is in the midst of an inquiry over conflicts of interest and recently dropped out of an unrelated case after a lawyer raised objections to a campaign contribution she received. But Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen, who represents the state Department of Revenue in the tax case, has not asked Ziegler to step aside.

Ol' J.B. has a bit of a conflict himself. WMC was a major, major financial angel in his campaign. The conservative group spent $2.5 million to run ads in support of Van Hollen
(and against Democratic candidate Kathleen Falk) during the campaign, according to the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign. WMC officials also donated $1,750 to Van Hollen's campaign, according to WDC.

Here's the picture: Attorney General Van Hollen, who greatly benefited from an WMC's support and cash during his campaign, failed to ask Judge Ziegler -- who also benefited from WMC's support and cash during her own campaign -- to recuse herself because of her obvious conflict of interest from a tax case partially funded by that very same generous-to-its-friends WMC.

Would WMC stay so friendly with Van Hollen if he had pushed for Ziegler's ouster from the case?

This stinks.

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