The postmortem on former Gov. John Rowland’s second prison sentence is highlighted (lowlighted?) by what his wife Patty and his BFF Pastor Will Marotti had to say. The comments epitomize just what’s wrong with Rowland. The one-time Republican rising star was sentenced Wednesday to 30 months in prison, three years probation, and a $35,000 fine.
On the way out of the courtroom, the former Connecticut first lady told one of the prosecutors to “burn in hell.” Interesting. She clearly holds the government responsible for her husband going to prison for a second time in ten years.
It reminds The Shad of the infamous Middlesex County Chamber of Commerce poem Mrs. Rowland read back in December of 2003 as the winds of investigation started to swirl. She blamed everyone for her husband’s woes except her narcissistic husband. See the transcript of that poem here.
She flamed the Hartford Courant, the Courant’s John Lender, the media is general, unions, just about everyone except her husband. So there is no surprise that she blamed the prosecutor for her family’s most recent problems.
Equally telling were the comments made by Pastor Will Marotti, Rowland’s counselor, confidant, one-time radio show cohost and general enabler. The good pastor also wanted to absolve his friend of wrongdoing. “John is not the bad manipulative, deceptive person…[he is] a casualty of circumstances.”
Huh? A victim of circumstances? No one forced Rowland to approach congressional candidate Mark Greenberg in 2010 and propose a sham and illegal campaign arrangement (Greenberg refused). Nor did circumstance force him to try the scam out on candidate Lisa Wilson-Foley and her husband Brian in 2012 (they accepted). And no one held a gun to the former governor’s to make him use his show on the radio juggernaut WTIC-AM to bash Wilson-Foley’s competition in the race.
Just like Patty Rowland, this is not the first time Marotti has backed his buddy. When Rowland got out of prison in 2005, Marotti said, “John Rowland today  is not the same guy he was in 2003. He’s very much in tune with his weakness, more sensitive and more humble.” Oops.
(Of course it’s fair to ask, with Marotti being so close to Rowland, what did he know about Rowland’s shenanigans and when did he, Marotti, know it?)
Maybe the problem with John Rowland isn’t the fact that he is simply incorrigible. Maybe it’s that everyone around him was too cowardly to tell him the hard truth, that what he was doing was betraying the public’s trust, that it’s illegal, and that he’d likely go to jail.