Each Friday here at Off Message headquarters, we bring you the week's winners and losers in Vermont news and politics. Here they are for the week of Friday, Oct. 26:
The Vermont Municipal Bond Bank — The little-known bonding backwater became the topic of the week after Democratic State Treasurer Beth Pearce turned its internal "watch list" into a campaign hit against her Republican opponent, Rutland City Treasurer Wendy Wilton. Man, I hope I never get on their shit list.
Vince Illuzzi and Doug Hoffer —Weasely Vermont politicians, particularly Democrats, have taken to the line that while they hate on Citizens United, there's nothing they can legally do to stop super PACs from spending on their behalf. But Sen. Vince Illuzzi (R-Franklin), the Republican candidate for state auditor, has proved them wrong: He told the press he wished the conservative Vermonters First wouldn't back his candidacy and, lo and behold, they stopped! His Democratic opponent, Doug Hoffer, also deserves praise for his early and unequivocal denunciation of super PACs. Better than most Dems.
Department of Human Resources lawyers — Republican gubernatorial candidate Randy Brock sent administration lawyers on a massive dumpster dive Thursday morning, asking for pretty much every document related to anything from any time. Bummer for administration lawyers. Runner-Up Loser: Randy Brock for devoting the closing days of his gubernatorial campaign to a peculiar wild goose chase. What's Randy fishing for anyway?
Vermont GOP campaign coffers — As Sam Hemingway reported in the Burlington Free Press Thursday, more than $7.8 million temporarily parked in the Vermont Republican Party's federal campaign account has, as expected, been transferred to Mitt Romney's efforts in battleground states. The real bummer is that Vermont GOP chairman Jack Lindley seemed to have no idea that was the case until Hemingway gave him a ring.
Seven Days' Paul Heintz, VPR's John Dillon and VTDigger.org's Nat Rudarakanchana — We three blind mice spotted Wendy Wilton looking on as Beth Pearce attacked her at a Statehouse press conference Monday (see left). After it ended, we chased Wilton through the Statehouse to get a response (she left halfway through) only to realize that the woman we identified as the Rutland Republican actually wasn't. It was Rep. Anne O'Brien (D-Richmond). What a bunch of knucklehead reporters!