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Sunday, May 18, 2008

Senator Satveer Chaudhary: The Double Standard and the Appearance of Impropriety

From a story in today' s Star and Sickle :
The DFLer got a deal on an Arctic Cat snowmobile he used on the show, and a union is a program sponsor. He says his votes aren't affected.

State Sen. Satveer Chaudhary, who produces and hosts an outdoor-sports cable show, has cut sponsorship deals with a corporation and a union that have stakes in bills he pushed in the Legislature.

In a deal with Arctic Cat, Chaudhary purchased a snowmobile in January at a discount after he borrowed it for an episode of his "Born to be Wild" program.

Chaudhary, a DFLer from Fridley who is chairman of the Senate Environment and Natural Resources Committee, later unsuccessfully backed an amendment to require the Department of Natural Resources to purchase snowmobiles and all-terrain vehicles only from Minnesota manufacturers. Arctic Cat is based in Thief River Falls, Minn.M.
The good senator claims that the arrangement has not impacted his votes. Not everyone, however agrees:
"It smells awful," said David Schultz, an attorney and professor in the Hamline University Graduate School of Management who has studied and written about money in politics.

Schultz said: "He has got an intermixing of his professional life, legislation he is introducing, lobbyists and PACs -- and is mixing it in a way that he can't separate those roles out."
Maybe there's a conflict here, maybe not. But can you imagine the outrage by people like Chaudhary if a Republican had cut such a sweet deal?

One more little detail in the Star and Sickle coverage:
Chaudhary, who is an attorney and an avid hunter and fisherman, said he does separate his role as legislator from his new career as an outdoors show host.
The DFL cheerleaders at the Strib just had to work that "avid hunter and fisherman" line straight from Chaudhary's campaign literature. It appears to at least some of us on the Right that this is merely window dressing that attempts to cover up Chaudary's poor record on gun rights and the rights of gun owners. This doofus may well not know which end of the gun the bullet comes out of, in spite of his "avidness" for outdoorsy activities.

Double standards. Favorable coverage of a liberal by the Strib. I guess there really isn't a lot of news in this story after all.

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Blogger Force50 said...

Satveer Chaudhary is a funny fellow. I don't think he would recognize a conflict of interest if it bit him in the tail. Does anyone remember the photo op shot of a few years ago of Satveer in a hunting getup. I think he was in deer hunting orange with a .22 rifle and a duck boat in the background. Nothing appropriate to either type of hunting. He was Elmer Fudd with the wrong equipment. Like a lot of politicians he fakes it to appeal to segments of the voter population and sometimes looks silly doing it. He is reportedly a member of dozens of civic organizations which he could not possibly devote meaningful time and attention to. It is he himself who craves attention.

5/19/2008 10:05 AM  
Blogger Force50 said...

Chaudhary has now called for a "bipartisan" ethics panel to determine if he has any conflicts of interest. Still it is DFL controlled. It will be a whitewash.

5/22/2008 9:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Satveer chaudhary is a joke! I've met the guy and he comes off as the most two faced SOB there is out there. He would never help a dying woman on the street if he didnt think it would help his image to the masses.

7/08/2008 11:12 PM  

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