Last week I wrote about news that Ray Taffora, the top deputy to Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen, sought direction from Ben Cannatti, the political director of the Republican State Leadership Committee (RSLC) prior to Van Hollen’s attempt to join a lawsuit against the federal health care reform act. At the time, I noted the RSLC is a 527 political organization based outside of Washington, D.C. that is funded in part by health industry corporations and has spent in excess of $57 million to elect Republican candidates since 2002. I also noted that according to its website, RSLC’s “mission is to elect more Republicans at the state level, including Attorneys General, Lieutenant Governors, Secretaries of State, and State Legislators.”
As if J.B. Van Hollen seeking legal advice from a Republican political operative – and not a legal and/or Constitutional scholar – wasn’t bad enough, the Wisconsin State Journal is reporting Chirag Shah, the campaign manager for Attorney General Van Hollen’s reelection campaign, was involved in e-mail exchanges about filing the lawsuit to block the new federal health care reform law. Shah has downplayed having been a part of the email exchanges between the Department of Justice and Republican political operatives regarding a possible health care lawsuit by Van Hollen, but this simply doesn’t pass the smell test.