Saturday, February 04, 2006

Teflon Tim and the Mystery of Marconi's Invention

MPR has a nice little article on the conflict of interest/just plain bad form of the Best Governor Currently Residing in Minnesota. It seems that Pawlenty still holds his radio show every Friday morning, same as he's been doing since he took office. Problem is--according to his opponents--that he's a candidate in an election year and he's getting a free hour to shoot the breeze with his potential voters while they're forced to hoof it from door-to-door in Uptown to get some face time with the locals. Do the locals ever invite them in for soup and biscuits? No, never.

Now, as the article points out, Tim hasn't declared his candidacy, and thus is legally okay. He doesn't need to give up the show--or at least provide an extra hour for the whole "equal time" thing--until he officially enters the race. From a legal standpoint, I suppose, Tim's ass is covered. But ethically? It's strange, but while you'd think that ethics and the law would go hand in hand, it's often not the case. Ethically, Tim's treading on some thin ice. Getting a free propaganda hour every Friday while Kelly Doran has to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars whiting-out "For Senate" and plastering "For Governor" over his "Kelly Doran for Senate" signs is hardly fair.

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