The Connecticut GOP has finally responded to pressure from George Colli (TheCTCapitalist.com) to comment on the business dealings of Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont's wife, Annie, and her company Oak HC/FT, which has been in an investment partnership with Sanabil Investments, a Saudi Arabia-owned investment firm. The firm is a wholly-owned company by Public Investment Fund (PIF), one of the largest sovereign wealth funds in the world, with estimated assets of US$700 billion.
Republicans certainly remember Democrats attacking failed gubernatorial candidate Bob Stefanowski for working as a consultant on a joint green energy project between Israel and Saudi Arabia.
“After months of refusing to reveal the clients who helped him earn more than $36 million in the last three years, we now know Bob Stefanowski was making millions on a project endorsed by the Saudi Arabian government,” Democrat State Party Chairwoman Nancy DiNardo said. “Bob Stefanowski talks about transparency, but hid the facts. What else is he hiding? Why did it take being confronted for Bob to admit his work with the Saudi regime?”
Governor Lamont said, “well, I can see why somebody running for office would want to hide that from the public. I think it raises some real questions about his judgment and his independence. I think signing a deal with the Saudis right after the assassination of [Jamal] Khashoggi raises questions about judgment.”
US Representative Jim Himes said, "This is a brutal murderous regime and regardless of what they may or may not do to assist us with counterterrorism efforts, it's time to cut ties. In that moment, Bob Stefanowski made a different decision. He said it's time to go work with this guy."
Apparently "Saudi Annie" reached a similar conclusion as Stefanowski, and decided to work with the Saudi sovereign wealth fund instead of, for instance, Connecticut-based companies.
But where's the outrage over "Saudi Annie"? What else is she hiding? And how long will it take before Lamont is finally confronted and forced to make a statement about his wife's work?
It took five days of pressure on social media before the GOP finally issued a statement that blasted Lamont for playing the "rules for thee, not for me" game.
"Whether it is the utter waste of taxpayer money on the state pier boondoggle, the school construction scandal that has fallen off the radar, the no bid multi-million dollar COVID testing contract that was given to his wife’s company, the “rats” that were shoved into the budget and bond bills at the last minute, without so much of a syllable being spoken to legislators, let alone municipal officials who will be impacted by these tawdry shenanigans, and now, after attacking Bob Stefanowski for his work as a consultant on a joint green energy project between Saudi Arabia and Israel, we learn that Governor Lamont’s wife, Anne Lamont, and her venture capital company, Oak HC/FT has invested millions of dollars with Sanabil Investments, a Saudi Arabia owned investment firm, with no rebuke from any Democrat is a whole new level of hypocrisy."
“Connecticut voters not only want answers, but are entitled to answers as to the ethics of the Lamonts’ business dealings and corruption in this administration. There seems to be no repercussions here for the Lamonts or Democrats, from the appropriate authorities, from the press, or from within the Democrat Party, all of whom should have been and should be continuing to press Governor Lamont for answers.” said State Republican Chairman Ben Proto.CT GOP Statement
Of course, the Connecticut state treasury also has $22 million in investments in Saudi Arabia, most of which is invested in Saudi government bonds and Saudi oil. A spokesman for Lamont previously said the governor was open to looking into the possibility of divestment, but stopped short of endorsing the policy outright. Maybe that's because he personally benefits from Saudi investments?