Home 2013 races Virginians deserve better than Cuccinelli’s ‘Just Trust Me’ Ethics Approach

Virginians deserve better than Cuccinelli’s ‘Just Trust Me’ Ethics Approach

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From the DPVA: 

Right now Virginia’s Inspector General is conducting an investigation into Ken Cuccinelli’s office to determine whether or not they violated any legal or ethical standards by helping out-of-state energy companies (one of which is a major donor to his campaign) in a lawsuit against Virginia landowners seeking millions in gas royalties.

The Inspector General is not however investigating Cuccinelli himself, because Virginia law bans him from opening investigations into elected officials unless requested to do so by the Governor, the Attorney General or a grand jury. When asked about the Attorney General’s role in the scandal, Virginia Inspector General Stephen Morehart said, “I couldn’t look at the AG if I wanted to.”

That means that, while Cuccinelli’s staff is under investigation for appearing to put one of his campaign donors ahead of Virginia taxpayers in a private lawsuit, Cuccinelli is one of two people who can ensure that Virginians get answers about his personal role in this deepening scandal.

When asked if he would welcome an investigation into his own conduct earlier this week, Cuccinelli ducked the question saying:

“There is no reason to (investigate the Attorney General specifically), [you’re] describing emails to an attorney because there were e-mails to one attorney,” he said.  “If anything broaden beyond that he has the authority to go beyond that.”

Even someone as ethically challenged as Ken Cuccinelli has to recognize the unacceptable conflict of interest that stems from him being one of the only people empowered to call for an investigation into his own actions. “Just trust me” isn’t enough for Virginians who deserve to know if their Attorney General used their tax dollars to benefit a campaign donor in a lawsuit against Virginia families.

He should formally request an investigation immediately.