I just got off a conference call with Virginia Senate Democratic Caucus Chair Donald McEachin, House Democratic Leader David Toscano, and DPVA Chair Charniele Herring, during which they urged Ken Cuccinelli to resign his office over his inexcusable conflict of interest with tobacco and drug company Star Scientific. As the DPVA explains, “More than two weeks of news accounts have revealed that Cuccinelli neglected to disclose that he owned Star Scientific stock when they sued Virginia to avoid paying up to $1.5 million in taxes, failed to recuse his office from the case and bought more Star stock after the company filed their suit against the Commonwealth…McEachin, Toscano and Herring will call on Cuccinelli to put transparency and accountability ahead of his personal ambition and resign his office.” A few more highlights from the call:
Charniele Herring: Cuccinelli was not elected to use his office as a platform for his personal and ideological agenda, but unfortunately that’s what he’s done in the case of Star Scientific and Jonnie Williams (“deep pocketed special interests”). So, we’re calling on Cuccinelli step down as Attorney General immediately.
Donald McEachin: This issue is not a partisan issue, it’s a matter of what kind of leadership Virginians deserve in their Attorney General. These are not Democratic accusations against Cuccinelli, the news has been reported by the AP, Washington Post, Richmond Times-Dispatch, and the Virginian Pilot. Cuccinelli has put his personal and financial interest over the interest of Virginians.
David Toscano: Cuccinelli’s “inexcusable conflict of interest” with Star Scientific goes deeper than we knew a week ago. Now, given all that we know about this scandal, Cuccinelli must resign.
P.S. Bob Lewis of the AP attempted to get the people on the call to talk about Bob McDonnell’s conflict of interest with Star Scientific, but was told that the focus of this particular call was on Ken Cuccinelli, because he’s the Attorney General and also running for governor.