According to this morning's (page 1, above the fold) Columbus Dispatch, Blackwell had his hand in the same cookie jar Jim Petro did...
GOP foes both did no-bid deals
Blackwell denied it, but he takes money he rips Petro for taking
Sunday, March 12, 2006
THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH
Despite one-sided charges, both Republican candidates for governor have taken campaign cash from those they awarded no-bid state contracts, records show.
J. Kenneth Blackwell has criticized rival Jim Petro repeatedly in recent weeks for using lawyers who received unbid specialcounsel work from the attorney general's office as a "fundraising ATM."
But a Dispatch analysis shows Blackwell has taken thousands of dollars in contributions over time from vendors who got no-bid work from the secretary of state's office under his control.
After saying Feb. 20 that he didn't take such contributions, Blackwell said Friday they are "nominal" and pale in comparison to Petro's -- and that he hasn't used the "strong-arm tactics" he accuses Petro of employing.
Blackwell also said he would return all of his contributions from vendors who got unbid work if Petro did the same, but a Petro spokesman said Blackwell is trying to avoid being labeled a hypocrite.
"His offer doesn't change the facts: Ken Blackwell still says one thing and does another," said Bob Paduchik, Petro's campaign manager.
This is sweet. Now let's sit back and watch the Petro campaign open fire.