Yesterday, Democrats exposed the real purpose of the project. Two County Democratic Party Chairmen have filed ethics complaints against seven Republican legislators “as current events on Legislative conflicts gave me cause to review the relevant files and the information contained herein only recently came to light”. In other words, taxpayers paid the research tab for a partisan stunt. Is that ethical or even legal?
Clearly, the Democrats are out for revenge to counter the growing list of Democrats who have been investigated, indicted and convicted for public corruption by the U.S. Attorney’s office, led by Chris Christie. If that was the goal, their little project was a bust.
The complaints, which may be read here, allege the lawmakers “may have advocated for” a number of state grants from 2000 through 2002. “Based on financial disclosure forms” the complaints identify employers and charity affiliations for the legislators and in some instances for their family members. Missing from the complaints are specific conflicts of interest or cases of personal financial gain tied to the state grants.
Not surpassingly, the ethics complaints were filed by two attorneys, Richard J. Perr and Elia A. Pelios, both with their own pipelines into state and local coffers.
Perr is a partner at the law firm Fineman Krekstein & Harris and an adjunct professor Rutgers School of Law - Camden. In his spare time, Perr is also the Burlington County Democratic Party Chairman.
The second complaining attorney, Elia A. Pelios, works for the law firm Ventantonio & Wildenhain, is Commissioner/President of the Somerset County Board of Taxation and President of the New Jersey Association of County Tax Boards. In his spare time, Pelios is also the Somerset County Democratic Party Chairman.
New Jersey’s Attorney General, Stuart Rabner should investigate these two with their tangled financial, political and government connections - that’s if he can spare a few minutes away from his all important Corzine seatbelt case.