Monday, March 06, 2006

Baas: Speaker's Office an 'Atypical Work Setting'

Asked to describe a typical day in the speaker's office, Baas said it was impossible because it was "an atypical work setting."

Baas said the speaker's office was considered by the press as a hub for all Assembly GOP offices.

He said he did field calls from the press asking questions about campaigns. When those calls would come in, he'd contact the appropriate person at Taxpayers for Jensen, or go to the Elections Board himself to get the answer, he said.

Meyer asked if he went to Carrie (Hoeper) Richard for information when she was in the office. Last week, she testified that she served as treasure of Jensen's campaign when she was employed in the state office.

"I don't recall specifically if I ever asked Carrie for it or not," Baas said, but added if she had the information he likely would have because, "I was very interested in efficiency."

Baas said he did assist in writing fundraising letters, and he did so at his desk in the speaker's office. He said the bulk of what he contributed was material he already composed for press releases or columns, and he said the mission was the same for that sort of communication as for fundraising. "We wanted to put our message out there as attractively and aggressively as possible," Baas said.

Jensen never instructed him to work on the fundraising letters in the office, Baas said. "That's something I did on my own initiative, exercising my own judgment," Baas said.

Baas said he considers Jensen "a dear friend."

"I've found him to be a person of extraordinary integrity," Baas said.

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