"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." -- Mahatma Gandhi

Randles: “[Blagojevich] Is Sitting in Federal Prison for Attempting to do What Jay Nixon Has Seemingly Already Done”

March 30th, 2012 by mopns · No Comments

GOP gubernatorial candidate Bill Randles released a written statement today calling for a federal investigation into recent reports of Governor Nixon engaging in “pay-to-play” activities. The Nixon administration awarded an exclusive $1.1 billion contract to insurance company Centene after receiving campaign contributions from both the company and its CEO.

Here is an excerpt from today’s statement:

“Rod Blagojevich must be scratching his head. He is sitting in federal prison for attempting to do what Jay Nixon has seemingly already done. Jay Nixon has apparently awarded a $1.1 billion exclusive contract to a major donor to his campaign who is not even licensed to operate an HMO in Missouri. Insurance company Centene and its CEO, Michael Neirdorff, have contributed $66,500 to Jay Nixon. In exchange Centene has been awarded a contract that prohibits anyone else from even competing to provide services to 450,000 of Missouri’s poorest citizens.

Centene is not new to the pay to play game. In 2008, it received $8 million in state tax credits to remain in St. Louis County. Last year a $5.5 million state contract with Syncare, a “variable interest entity” of Centene’s, ended in disaster. SynCare failed so miserably it was fired, or withdrew depending on who you ask, from a state contract to provide Medicaid services. Unsurprisingly, that Centene-controlled company’s chief lobbyist is a long-time political advisor of Jay Nixon. Oh, and the Nixon administration official who approved the contract went to work for SynCare six months later.

As an attorney, I can see no legal distinction between what Jay Nixon has already done and what Rod Blagojevich tried to do. The U.S. Attorney’s office should open an immediate investigation of Jay Nixon’s actions.”

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