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Howell backs McDonnell on commerce secretary

Rosalind Helderman

The controversy over Gov.-elect Bob McDonnell's decision to let his Cabinet secretaries remain on corporate boards is a "big to-do about nothing," House Speaker Bill Howell said today.

The party power change is indeed upon us.

After eight years of scathing critiques of the governor's office from the Republican party and its top leaders -- and regular defenses of the executive by the Democratic establishment -- the Virginia political world is being flipped on its head.

Wednesday, it was the Democratic Party of Virginia putting out an incendiary release blasting McDonnell for allowing incoming Commerce and Trade Secretary Bob Sledd to continue work on three corporate boards, donating his board salaries to charity.

Now, it is Howell -- who has been no slouch over the years with criticisms of Democratic Govs. Tim Kaine and Mark Warner -- coming to McDonnell's defense.

"What kind of person do you want in the main job of helping to entice jobs [other than] someone who's been very successful in that world?" Howell said. "The guy's going to be perfect. I can't believe that's even an issue."

By Rosalind Helderman  |  January 7, 2010; 12:26 PM ET
Categories:  Robert F. McDonnell , Rosalind Helderman  
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My understanding was that he was going to keep the salaries from the boards and donate his government salary to charity (because it was less than the board salaries). I think that is outrageous--being paid by the very corporations that will be under his jurisdiction, while forgoing the salary from the people of the state--for whom he is supposed to be working!

Posted by: HopesMa | January 7, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

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