Berlin, Vt. – Vermont Republican Party Executive Director Jeff Bartley today issued the following statement on the election year flip-flop of Sue Minter and the Vermont Democrat Party on ethics reform:

“In what can only be described as the very definition of hypocrisy, Sue Minter and Peter Shumlin’s Democrat Party are suddenly pretending to care about ethics in state government when, in fact, they’ve run all such proposals off the road during their years in power.

“Let’s all keep in mind – and hopefully Vermont’s media will report – that the Democrats have had TOTAL control of state government for six years and TOTAL control of the Legislature for 14 years.  In that time they’ve passed a TOTAL of ZERO meaningful ethics reforms.

“If Sue Minter and Peter Shumlin’s Democrats were serious about ethics reform, which of course they are not, they could take four simple steps:

  1. PASS ETHICS REFORM — Since they control the Legislature and the Governor’s office there is absolutely no reason why they could not pass ethics reform, if they were serious about it, except that they don’t want to pass ethics reform. In fact, the Democrats themselves killed all proposed ethics reform bills – often under the direction of Democrat legislative leaders. They are hypocrites, plain and simple, and the people of Vermont have a right to know this.
  2. RETURN THEIR DIRTY MONEY – If they had ethics and were serious about ethics reform, the Vermont Democrat Party and Governor Peter Shumlin would return the more than $70,000 of dirty EB-5 money (not including the piles of cash donated to Sen. Leahy) they received from the perpetrators of Vermont’s biggest scam.
  3. CENSURE PETER SHUMLIN – If Sue Minter really cared about ethics, she would have spoken out against the deplorable actions of her mentor Peter Shumlin when he swindled his mentally handicapped East Montpelier neighbor out of his home.  Where was Sue?  Silent. Likewise, if the Democrats in the Legislature were even remotely interested in ethics reform, they would have censured the Governor for disgracing the office in one of the single most unethical, un-neighborly, un-Vermont-like actions ever taken by a Governor.
  4. DID WE MENTION …. PASS ETHICS REFORM? — Again, this one party controls all the lawmaking branches of state government.  There is no reason why they could not have passed ethics reform, if their statements are authentic. The current lack of ethics reform rests squarely on their shoulders, a fact which they of course are not willing to admit.

“Don’t be fooled by their blame shifting. It’s time Sue Minter and the other Shumlin Democrats are held accountable for their hollow and hypocritical rhetoric.

“Their only goal is to distract voters from the fact that they’ve raised taxes and fees by $700 million in the last six years, our workforce is shrinking and our economic foundation is eroding. And that the Vermont Democrats, in fact, have the most to lose from any ethics reform legislation.”