McKinney Questions Ethics of Malloy's DC Trip

Governor Dannel Malloy was People magazine's guest at the White House Correspondents' Association dinner.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013  |  Updated 4:17 PM EDT
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McKinney Questions Ethics of Malloy's DC Trip

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Gov. Dannel Malloy attended the White House correspondents dinner and an elected official is saying it violated ethics law because People magazine paid for the trip.

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Senate Minority Leader John McKinney is questioning whether Gov. Dannel P. Malloy violated Connecticut ethics laws when he attended the White House Correspondents' Association dinner as a guest of People magazine.

The Republican, who is considering a possible run for governor in 2014, on Wednesday called on the Democratic governor to provide documents and correspondence pertaining to his trip last weekend, which McKinney said is estimated to have cost at least $1,000.

He said that's a "clear violation" of the law. State ethics rules prohibit any public official from accepting gifts in excess of $100 a year from a non-restricted donor.

"Since People Magazine, a non-restricted donor with no business with the State, offered to relieve the Connecticut taxpayers of that expense, the Governor’s Office accepted the invitation.  Out of an abundance of respect for Connecticut’s ethics laws, the Governor’s Office will seek a formal advisory opinion of the Citizen’s Ethics Advisory Board," according to a statement from the governor's office.

Malloy told reporters on Monday that he sat at the same table on Saturday night with actresses Amy Poehler and Jessica Pare.


Here is the complete statement from Malloy's office:

Governor Malloy was invited, in his official capacity, to attend the White House Correspondents’ Dinner by People Magazine.  The Office of the Governor has received past guidance from the Office of State Ethics indicating that a non-restricted donor (as opposed to a restricted donor) may make payment for expenses that public officials may incur to travel to events, attendance at which will facilitate state action or functions.  Governor Malloy’s attendance at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner provided an invaluable opportunity to advance Connecticut’s interests.  The White House Correspondents’ Dinner is a unique gathering of senior Obama administration officials, members of Congress, and business and media leaders from around the country.  The Governor’s Office could have paid for Governor Malloy’s trip to the White House Correspondents’ Dinner.  Since People Magazine, a non-restricted donor with no business with the State, offered to relieve the Connecticut taxpayers of that expense, the Governor’s Office accepted the invitation.  Out of an abundance of respect for Connecticut’s ethics laws, the Governor’s Office will seek a formal advisory opinion of the Citizen’s Ethics Advisory Board.

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