Chuck the Fundraiser

Published on

Arnold’s chief fundraising guru
Marty Wilson has a side-deal with a company doing business with the
state. The conflict of interest should force the gov to send Wilson
packing. The Canadian CGI-AMS, which was hired by Arnold in a
controversial deal last summer, has signed up Wilson’s firm
(Wilson-Miller Communications) to "persuade [state] department heads to
join a struggling procurement program," according to the Associated

CGI-AMS hopes that with Arnold’s money man on their side, state
agencies that have so far been unimpressed with CGI’s services will
feel more pressure to acquiesce. It’s Pay-to-Play and Play-for-Pay.

First, fundraiser Wilson brought in $25k from CGI-AMS for Arnold and
Arnold gave CGI-AMS a huge state contract. Now, Wilson has agreed to
use his juice with the gov to help CGI-AMS get more contracts with
state agencies (the company’s pay is based on the size and number of
contracts it arranges).

While this may seem confusing, it’s old hat for Wilson. He was one of
the idea-men behind the multi-million dollar insurance industry
contribution scheme that forced disgraced insurance commissioner Chuck
Quackenbush to resign in 2000. Another former Wilson client was the
indicted energy firm Reliant, that bilked California taxpayers during
the phony energy crisis.

Arnold’s recall campaign against Gray Davis accused him of signing
pay-to-play contracts in which companies could get plum deals from the
state in exchange for contributions. A massive state agreement with
software giant Oracle was cancelled after it was revealed that Oracle
contributed $25k to Davis. And Gray was forced to fire the fundraiser
who took the contribution because the check changed hands in the
Capitol building.

There’s little California voters frown upon more than blatant conflicts
of interest in the governor’s office. If Wilson’s relationship with the
gov leverages state contracts for AGI – and it’s hard to believe it
won’t have an effect – Wilson’s violation is far worse than accepting a
check in the horseshoe rather than at the Esquire Grill. Arnold should
take Gray’s lead and fire Wilson.

Consumer Watchdog
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