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Looks Like a Duck, Smells Like a Duck

It’s getting worse. First, in clear disregard of state law, Governor Bill Richardson sent out an email blast to 300,000 people asking for their financial support. This may be legal – the Attorney General recently weighed in – but it is doubtful whether it can be considered ethical. Worse, it seems to make a mockery of the proposed ethics legislation currently being considered.

Now, we have this (subscription):

The Washington Post in a political blog entry reported that the Dozoretzes hosted a “fundraising event” for Richardson on Friday and noted the couple has been chummy with the Clintons in the past.

The blog didn’t point out that Ron Dozoretz has major business interests in New Mexico.

He runs the parent company of ValueOptions, which last fiscal year oversaw $300 million in mental health and substance abuse services under contract with New Mexico state government.

Richardson presidential campaign spokesman Pahl Shipley said the event was a “meet-and-greet” and not a fundraiser, adding he didn’t know if anyone wrote checks to the Richardson camp.

Which raises the question… which is more unethical:

  1. The fact that Bill Richardson is unquestionably raising money from those with business before the legislature during a legislation session.


  2. A campaign spokesman who says, “he didn’t know if anyone wrote a check.”

I’m thinking #1 is unethical, and #2 is just plain insulting.