After Nathan Deal was elected governor last year, his team was understandably eager to change the conversation from the ethics allegations that dogged his campaign to how he would govern.
Months later, the talk surrounding Deal has come full circle. The state ethics agency’s director, Stacey Kalberman, claims her salary was slashed and her deputy’s job eliminated not because of budget constraints, but because they had just prepared subpoenas for their inquiry into Deal’s campaign spending.
Absent any new revelations, the story is a matter of he said, she said, with obvious motivations for each side. The benefit of the doubt for many Georgians will lie with Kalberman, given the curious timing of the budget concerns and the sheer number of complaints against Deal dating back to his tenure in Congress.
The best argument in Deal’s favor may be that going after Kalberman — and turning an under-the-radar investigation into a full-blown media frenzy — would be an awfully dumb