When Tom Foley appeared on John Dankosky’s “Where We Live” radio show on WNPR-FM, he raised eyebrows by downplaying the corrupt actions of former Governor John Rowland. Foley said it was “never shown” that Rowland used his state position to enrich contractors while reaping personal benefits such as improvements to his summer home, free airplane flights and cut-rate or free vacations. In fact, Rowland admitted to exactly that when he pled guilty to a single charge of “theft of honest services.” Foley took some heat for soft-pedaling Rowland’s misdeeds, including from Dankosky’s colleague at WNPR, Colin McEnroe.
Now, a report by the Hartford Courant’s Jon Lender makes some sense of why Foley went easy on Rowland—Rowland’s advising him in his run for the Republican gubernatorial nomination.
But Rowland’s reach and influence doesn’t stop there. According to Lender’s report, Rowland is involved with Waterbury Mayor Michael Jarjura’s campaign for the Democratic nomination for state comptroller. Rowland, his wife and his three children all contributed $100 to Jajura (the maximum amount allowed as a qualifying contribution for public financing). The connection between the two is nothing new. They’ve had a sort of “Waterbury alliance” to the point when Jarjura once called Rowland, “The best governor Connecticut ever had.”
Rowland also met with Republican gubernatorial candidate Oz Griebel and the campaign of fellow Republican Mike Fedele. All of this leads to speculation that Rowland is in the process of “re-emerging” in the world of politics.