State Republican Party Chairman joined with GOP candidate Mark Greenberg\’s criticism of U.S. Rep.Elizabeth Esty\’s fundraising from campaign contributors in the energy and environmental industries — which are regulated in Connecticut by her husband, Dan Esty, commissioner of the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.
Both Republicans\’ statements were prompted by a Courant Government Watch column that was posted online Friday night.
Here is Labriola\’s statement:
\”Connecticut’s collective ethics has received a one-two punch from Mr. and Mrs. Esty. Whether or not this is a shakedown, the appearance of a conflict is overwhelming. Does Governor Malloy approve of the connection between his Commissioner and the donations Congresswoman Esty has received from DEEP regulated companies? If anyone questions why our citizens have lost faith in their government leaders, they need look no further than this incident. Our regulatory process was not designed to work this way.
“These donations raise a number of questions: Will Elizabeth Esty return these donations as she did the previous improper donations late last month? If not, on what grounds will she keep the money? Will Governor Malloy instruct his Commissioner to advise companies he regulates to refrain from making donations to his wife because of the strong appearance of impropriety they create? Common sense would tell anyone that this “regulated by one half of the household, while donating to the other half” is a very bad arrangement.
“Voters deserve to know that the public trust is being protected by our elected and appointed officials. These donations send the opposite message.”
So far, Esty\’s spokesman, Jeb Fain, has not reacted to either Greenberg\’s or Labriola\’s comments.