The new Chief State’s Attorney Kevin Kane concluded in a letter to the legislature’s General Administration and Elections Committee Monday that “there is no evidence” to support the criminal prosecution of Gov. M. Jodi Rell’s Chief of Staff, M. Lisa Moody, on allegations of perjury. Minority Leader Robert Ward said Tuesday, “The crass, abusive actions by the Democrats were designed to embarrass the Governor, but in the end the Democrats wound up embarrassing themselves.” Ward again called the investigation into the Moody matter a “partisan witch hunt.”
In July the GAE committee handed documents over to former Chief State’s Attorney Christopher Morano, who had expressed interest in conducting a preliminary review of the accusations based on media reports of the new documentation. The document in question was a draft of the ethics guidelines with Moody’s handwritten notes. Moody admitted to violating the guidelines, but under oath was unable to recall reading them. In a July 13 letter to the committee chairman Morano wrote, “when information of potential wrongdoing comes to the attention of this office, where appropriate, we have the authority and duty to investigate.“Morano was replaced by Kane a few months ago. Ward said it wouldn’t have made a difference who the chief states attorney was because, “both of them could have come to no other conclusion.“Director of Communications for the Senate Democrats told NBC Channel 30 that even though the allegation “doesn’t rise to criminal charges, it’s still pretty bad.” He said it implies that these ethics guidelines she sets “only apply to those outside her inner circle.” An independent investigation into the matter by Daniel Klau, an attorney with Pepe and Hazard, found an inherent conflict of interest existed between the State Elections Enforcement Commission and the Department of Administrative Services. He said in August that watchdog agencies should not be should not be making enforcement decisions one day, when the next day they have to lobby that same person for funds to run their office. The GAE Committee has yet to release its report on the initial hearings, which took place back in May.