Thursday, March 09, 2006

Blanchard Returns to Themes of Duty, Money, Deception

In his closing argument, prosecutor Brian Blanchard returned to the three things the prosecution told the jury the case was about on the first day: duty, money and deception.

Blanchard said Jensen resorted to "misleading statements and outright falsehoods" to hide the "pervasive use" of state resources for a "campaign machine."

"Mr. Jensen decided the truth was too ugly to share, so he decided to keep up the deception," Blanchard said.

He asked the jury not to believe Jensen's defense that he wasn't aware that his staff was doing campaign work on state time.

"Everyone knew, including the boss Scott Jensen," Blanchard said.

"The ARC was one-stop shopping for campaigns," he added later.

To illustrate defendant Sherry Schultz's involvement, Blanchard focused on the testimony of two campaign treasurers, Stacy Ascher-Knowlton and Sharon Bartels, who said they got campaign finance advice and conduit and PAC checks from Schultz.

He also reminded jurors of Brian Dake and his testimony that Schultz' sole reason for attending planning meetings with legislators was to address campaign fundraising issues.

Blanchard also referred back to a note Schultz faxed to former Rep. Bonnie Ladwig about moving money around to candidates.

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