Wednesday, June 21, 2006

A deep breath

A GOP press release is highlighting an e-mail which shows some level of involvement by Marc Marotta in the travel contract that, or so a jury found, was illegally awarded to Adelman Travel. (There was a particularly trenchant column on the verdict in Tuesday's Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.)

Dems (like Jay Bullock)argue that the GOP is overreaching because it doesn't show that Marotta did anything wrong and they're right. It doesn't.

The problem is that Marotta, probably unwisely, pronounced that no one at the upper reaches of the Doyle administration (like Marc) would have even had this on their radar screen. I'm not the Secretary of Administration for the state of Wisconsin but I know that even I cannot recall everything that has been brought to my attention or on which I may have commented. By issuing that type of denial, when it turns out that he did have some involvement with the contract, it looks like his early statement was an attempt to cover up.

Marc Marotta and I used to be law partners but I know him only casually. I have no special insight into his character, but I'd be shocked if he intentionally did something illegal. He has never struck me as that type of guy.

But he did sort of step into this one.

And it does seem likely - or so the jury thought - that someone in the Doyle administration found some way to let Georgia Thompson know they wanted Adelman.

I think it would be irresponsible to accuse any individual of criminal conduct, but it does not seem that Doyle was running a clean ship.

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