A newly-released book about former Gov. Mitch Daniels’ almost-run for president is full of juicy political tidbits but also has raised ethical concerns.
The key questions are whether it was appropriate for him to use the Governor’s Residence – where he did not live – for political dinners and fundraising and whether the Aiming Higher Political Action Committee was used improperly . . .
“What was most interesting was the mention of detailed political meetings that took place at the Indiana Governor’s Residence, which were then followed by requests for contributions from donors,” said Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody. “The governor never lived in the residence during his eight years in office, so why was it used for politics?”
A message seeking comment from Daniels – who is now Purdue University president – was not immediately returned Tuesday.
The latest revelations come from “Run Mitch, Run: The Hard Decisions One Man Faced for the 2012 Presidential Election” by Don Cogman
Cogman was one of eight close friends and colleagues of Daniels’ who worked behind the scenes for more than a year on a pre-presidential campaign that was far more organized than most people realized . . .
But one new slant from the book was that Daniels and his “group” used the Aiming Higher Political Action Committee to get the dollars flowing. Aiming Higher was organized to elect a Republican majority in the General Assembly.
But the book reveals it was used for more than that. The book said the only way to get people from outside Indiana to contribute to the PAC “is to position it as a way to support him and encourage him to seriously think about the presidential race.” . . .Just another example of the utter incompetence of State House reporters when it came to covering anything concerning Mitch Daniels. There was a Pulitzer Prize to be won by a good investigative reporter, but they all preferred the role of being cheerleaders instead. Under Indiana's Constitution, the governor is required to live in Marion County. Although the media briefly raised that issue when it learned Daniels was moving into a new mansion he had built up in Carmel instead of the official residence so Cheri would play the happy wife, it quickly dropped the matter. Daniels still registered to vote at the governor's official residence, a fact that irked former Secretary of State Charlie White, whom Daniels quickly threw under the bus by asking him to resign over accusations he lived somewhere other than where he was registered to vote. With a full-court press of the State House reporters summoned to action by Daniels, White was vilified by the media and eventually prosecuted and convicted of six bogus felony charges related to his alleged illegal voter registration. The illicit use of the governor's residence and his political action committee is just more of the many things that went unreported during Daniels' tenure as governor.