WARD NOMINATION SCHEDULED FOR VOTE TODAY—WAS ONE OF ‘RELL’S PALS’ WHO GOT LOW-NUMBERED LICENSE PLATES; SAYS ‘IT WASN’T ILLEGAL’

The ethically challenged Rell administration just keeps on giving. And she apparently did so right up to her last day in office. Hartford Courant columnist Kevin Rennie reports on his blog, Daily Ructions, that insiders in the Rell administration—staffers, supporters and families—got low-numbered license plates from the state department of motor vehicles as the curtain closed on the administration. The low-numbered plates are considered a sort of status symbol (although The Shad has never understood why).

The list of those who have “most favored by Rell” status or “Friends of Jodi” (FOJ) is contained in Rennie’s blog. In looking at that list, questions should be asked of several of them:
• Former state Rep. Robert Ward (plate # 377). Ward was the commissioner of the DMV when the plates were doled out. He is now a nominee for the plum job of state auditor. In a case of perfect timing, Ward’s nomination is scheduled to be voted on today in the chamber in which he used to serve—the state House of Representatives. Will any House member have the guts to bring it up? Ward tells the Hartford Courant that no laws were broken and that it is a long-standing tradition. Is that were the bar is now? It’s not illegal and it’s been done before so it’s OK?  Ward went on to say it was former Bully-in-Chief Lisa Moody who requested the plates.
• State Senate Majority Leader John McKinney (plate # 460). Long a Rell supporter, Mc Kinney enjoys a pristine image as far as ethics. It simply doesn’t look good for him to have a numbered plate unavailable to the public. Besides, aren’t the legislative plates good enough? I guess the same can be asked of state Sen. Len Fassano (plate # 675) and state Rep. John Frey (plate # 474)
• Lisa Moody (plate # 83). You know, just forget this one. “Moody” and “unethical” are just redundant.

This whole situation is exactly the reason people become cynical about politics and government.