Eric Turner’s Democratic opponent calls him corruptMay 2nd, 2014 at 2:51 pm by Jim Shella under Jim Shella's Political Blog
State Representative Eric Turner’s ethics problems have now become political problems.
Turner was cleared by the House Ethics Committee, but his Democratic opponent is still trying to capitalize on this week’s events.
Bob Ashley called a news conference on the Statehouse steps where he took jabs at both Eric Turner and the House Ethics committee. He didn’t spare any words. He made the case that the ethics investigation of Eric Turner was a whitewash and argued that Turner has abandoned his constituents.
“I think we all knew what the outcome was going to be,” he said, “before it started.”
Turner was accused of private lobbying to kill a bill that would hurt a family nursing home business. Turner, a Republican from Cicero, said he was simply sharing his expertise, something citizen lawmakers are required to do.
“His expertise,” said Ashley, “was to kill the bill and make himself a million dollars.”
On Wednesday the ethics committee found Turner violated no rules but also found that by failing to report a direct interest in the nursing home company he failed to live up to the spirit of those rules.
“We’re expected to go beyond that,” said Rep. Clyde Kersey, “and so we hope to in the future revise some of our House rules.”
“And we want to make sure that in conjunction with that,” said Rep. Greg Steuerwald, “that we make the proper disclosures to keep the public trust.”
Ashley agrees that no rules were broken but he still argues that Turner should be punished.
“Mr. Turner, from what I understand, made more than a million dollars by killing that bill, personally, for his family, for himself, money in his pocket. That’s the reason he should be sanctioned. Whether he violated any official rules or not, morally he is corrupt.”
Turner has insisted all along that he did nothing wrong.
He represents a district that is strongly Republican and remains a favorite to win re-election. But, in case he didn’t know it already, he got the message Friday that this will be a rough campaign.