10/14/2005

A Miers story: a contract scandal with Bush TANG ties

Weird! -- law

The real Miers story: another contract scandal with TANG ties
by Tug

The set up:

Lawrence Littwin is the former head of the Texas Lottery Commission. He was hired in Feburary, 1997, and fired in October, 1997....Harriet Miers, of course, was the chair of the Texas Lottery Commission, and had been since 1995.

Why was Littwin fired?

After Littwin was fired, he sued a Rhode Island lottery company called GTech. GTech was the company currently contracted to run the lottery games of Texas, and this contract was worth hundreds of millions of dollars. But GTech was also a bit corrupt, and Texans started wondering why the contract cost so much.

One reason for this was because of the high wages commanded by GTech's main lobbyist in Texas, a man named Ben Barnes. Political junkies reading this probably remember his name. He's a former Speaker of the House in Texas who, last year, claims to have gotten Bush into the Texas Air National Guard so he could avoid the Vietnam draft.

Now, remember that Harriet Miers was also hired as counsel to investigate Bush's Air National Guard issue...which among other things means she has attorney client privilege on the matter.

Here is the crux of what Littwin is up to:

A former Texas lottery official, who claimed that then-Gov. George W. Bush's desire to cover up his National Guard record helped steer decisions about a key lottery contract, said he wants to talk to senators about Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers' possible role in that effort.

"If I were to be subpoenaed to come to the thing, I would come," said Lawrence Littwin, who filed a lawsuit after he was fired as the lottery's executive director in 1997. "I would say the committee, I think, would be interested."

And now, somebody found this recently:

The lottery commission blocked the release of two confidential memorandums with appeals to the state attorney general's office.

If ever there were an agency that really should not be operating in secret, it would be the Lottery Commission - they are sitting on millions to be given away. A little more pressue on these appeals would not hurt anything.

Daily Kos: The real Miers story: another contract scandal with TANG ties

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