Mayor John DeStefano of New Haven managed to make the front page of his hometown New Haven Register this morning , by sending political emails from his official city office. All of the emails were to announce endorsements and events for the Obama campaign.
Jessica Mayorga, DeStefano's city spokeswoman apparently sent out four pro-Obama emails before and after Super Tuesday.
DeStefano, whose large cranium makes him resemble the Great Gazoo of Flintstones fame, ought to know a little better than this... but apparently he doesn't. Nor does he care to learn.
Amazingly, nothing in state law directly prohibits municipal staff from publicizing a political endorsement. But according to the article, Joan Andrews, director of legal affairs and enforcement for the state Elections Enforcement Commission said "I'm not condoning it. It's not appropriate."
The Gazoo, however, believes he has the right to use his staff for campaign purposes. "It was a statement of fact. I didn't ask anybody in my statement to vote for him. There was no attempt to persuade." he is quoted as saying.
The reporter questioned Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, Stamford Mayor Dan Malloy, Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch, Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz, U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro and asked them if they ever used their staff for such purposes. The answer was an all around NO.
Even House Speaker Jim Amann, a man who has lower ethical standards than any speaker in memory, doesn't engage in the practice. DeStefano seems alone on this.
All of the people who were outraged when M. Lisa Moody, Governor Rell's chief of staff, handed out campaign fundraising invitations from her state office on state time ought to be equally outraged. But they won't be, because we all know the "good government" left in Connecticut do not even play by their own rules.
Are you an Obama supporter? You can probably pick up a bumper sticker and some lawn signs in DeStefano's office.