In this season of inquiries into gifts to high ranking Virginia elected public officials isn’t there one that has been overlooked?
Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has been scolded in advertising by his opponent for not returning intangible gifts such as elaborate turkey dinners and expensive family vacation getaways. But nothing has been said about the dubious earned income flowing to Mr. Cuccinelli shortly after he took office as State Senator in 2002.
Mr. Cuccinelli has “touted his background as an engineer and a patent lawyer.” June 20, 2013 appearance at Northern Virginia Technology Council forum in Reston reported in Washington Post article by Ben Pershing 6/20/13. The record shows that Cuccinelli has an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering. There appears to be no record of him ever working as an engineer. Nor is there a record of his being on the Register of Patent Attorneys and Agents of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
It is believed that if full disclosure is forthcoming the record will show that employment was arranged for Mr. Cuccinelli at the intellectual property law firm of Oblon Spivak in Alexandria, Virginia by the politically connected firm of Albo & Oblon. It is unclear what qualified Cuccinelli to be hired by this patent law firm where usually the technical background of new hires is considerably more sophisticated than that of Mr. Cuccinelli’s. Based on Oblon Spivak’s website, the law firm’s practice requires patent prosecution expertise, which appears to require technical understanding going well beyond the level of a BSME degree, not to mention skill in complex litigation.
Questions should be asked about what compensation was provided to Ken Cuccinelli by the Oblon Spivak firm at the suggestion of Albo & Oblon. What services were provided by Cuccinelli in exchange for that compensation? This “employment” was arranged and occurred at a time when Cuccinelli was spending a good deal of time in Richmond building his political career that has led to his campaign for Governor.