Monday, March 06, 2006

Cross-Examination of Baas Gets Tense

During a sometimes testy cross-examination, prosecutor Roy Korte asked Baas whether he was aware that Assembly Republican Caucus employees between '98 and '01 were doing campaign work using state resources.

At first, Baas said he didn't recall any such activity. He said he was in the communications business, not the campaign business.

Korte stayed at it, asking if he knew about the direct involvement of ARC employees in campaigns. "What is your definition of direct involvement in campaign activity?" Baas asked.

After Korte repeated the question, Baas said yes, he was aware of ARC conducting campaign activities.

Korte also asked if Jensen talked in those days about a future run for governor. Baas said he did.

Getting specific information from Baas proved difficult for Korte. At times Korte had to read to Baas his answers from a transcript of a February 2002 interview he had with investigators in which he told them of meetings held in Jensen's office with Hoeper to discuss campaign finances or upcoming campaign events.

Baas said he didn't doubt the veracity of the transcripts, or that he had those recollections at that time, but he doesn't specifically recall those incidents now as it was four years ago.


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