Corbett campaign lit displayed on AG booth at county fair
A table set up by the attorney general's office at a recent county fair.
CORRECTION APPENDED (See bottom)
Campaign materials for Republican Tom Corbett’s gubernatorial campaign were displayed at a booth set up by the attorney general’s government office at a recent county fair in Troy, pa2010.com has learned.
A photo provided by a Democratic operative not affiliated with Corbett’s opponent shows campaign buttons and literature on a table, and an official banner for the Office of the Attorney General hangs off the table. Though the photo lacks context, pa2010.com has confirmed that it was taken during the Bradford County Fair in Troy (click here to see a larger version of the photo). At that fair, the attorney general’s office had set up a consumer protection booth.
Any mingling of politics and official business, however remote, is a delicate subject for Corbett, who has made his name prosecuting legislative corruption in Harrisburg through the so-called Bonusgate investigation. In that scandal, government employees were convicted, and others still stand accused, of doing campaign work on the taxpayer’s dime.
Nils Frederiksen, a spokesman for the attorney general’s office, said the materials were placed on the table before staff from the office arrived. They were immediately removed when noticed, he said. He was unsure who placed the campaign literature on the table.
“Our staff has always been instructed that they represent the office of the attorney general, and not any campaign,” Frederiksen said. “I can tell you very clearly that as soon as any non-office materials are discovered by our staff, they are immediately removed.
“Our office doesn’t have any campaign material, so there’s no way our office would be able to place campaign materials at an attorney general’s office booth,” Frederiksen added. “So I can’t tell you how they got there. The only material that our office takes to county fairs is official attorney general’s office.”
The photo was also obtained by Democrat Dan Onorato’s campaign. Moments before this story was published, the campaign sent an e-mail to supporters asking “What’s wrong with this picture?”
Correction: This article originally misstated the location where the photo was taken. It was taken at the Bradford County Fair in Troy, not the Troy County Fair in Bradford (there is no Troy County in Pennsylvania).
July 29, 2010 at 11:46 am