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Thursday, April 19, 2007


Just 15 days before Gov. Matt Blunt nominated Rudolph Farber to the powerful State Highways and Transportation Commission on March 19, the Neosho banker donated $50,000 to the governor’s re-election campaign. The donation was made on March 4 and became public with Blunt’s April16 campaign finance disclosure report. Democratic lawmakers criticized the timing as the most recent – and most blatant – example of government for sale by the Blunt administration.

When asked at an April 17 news conference whether the donation was made in exchange for the appointment, the governor said: “I think one’s not connected to the other.” When contacted by The Associated Press earlier that day, Farber hung up the phone before the reporter could even tell him what the call was about. “I’m sorry, I have no desire to talk to you,” Farber told the reporter.
At his confirmation hearing before the Senate Gubernatorial Appointments Committee on April 18, Farber denied any quid pro quo. “It is my strong belief that the substantial contribution and support I’ve given to the governor is unrelated to this appointment,” Farber said, according to the AP. The committee endorsed Farber’s appointment, and the full Senate confirmed him on April 19.

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