The big news contained in the memo is that “the FBI has offered at no cost the use of their forensic accountant to assist us” in the Commission’s ongoing investigation of a complaint against Governor Deal. Does this signal federal interest in Georgia politics or a widening scope of inquiry?
The Columbus Ledger-Enquirer opined this morning that the departures of Kalberman and deputy Sherilyn Streicker:
put a new spotlight on already troubling questions about whether the state really has any effective oversight of political ethics at all.
But the real issue here is bigger than pay cuts or the elimination of a couple of executive jobs: It’s the question of whether Georgia’s highly touted new ethics laws can be viewed as anything other than a cynical political sham if there is no official will to enforce them.
Perhaps the General Assembly’s first order of business next year — even before the politically weighted and ethically dubious quest for tax “reform” — should be to reconstitute, and adequately fund, a real state ethics commission with legal expertise and investigative power and teeth. (Another suggestion: Call it an “ethics commission.”)
A state government sincerely committed to the proposition that it has nothing to hide owes its citizens nothing less.