“This is a fundamental question of ethics and who’s running our government”
A program funded by 2020 presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg is paying the salaries of lawyers who are farmed out to liberal state attorney general offices to pursue climate-based litigation — a compact critics say amounts to Bloomberg buying state law enforcement employees to advance his preferred political agenda.
The arrangement, which currently pays the salaries of Special Assistant Attorneys General (SAAGs) in 10 Democratic AG offices, is drawing new scrutiny now that Bloomberg is running for president. The New York University School of Law’s State Energy & Environmental Impact Center, which was started in 2017 with $5.6 million from Bloomberg’s nonprofit, hires mid-career lawyers as “research fellows” before providing them to state AGs where they assist in pursuing “progressive” policy goals through the courts.
“This is a fundamental question of ethics and who’s running our government,” said West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, one of a handful of Republican attorneys general who have raised concerns about the Bloomberg-funded program. “When you actually get to place someone in under a specific agenda and then pay them and they’re within the office, that starts to call into question whether there are multiple masters within an attorney general office and that starts to really stink.” read more