August 13, 2018 05:14 AM
Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson is fighting back against accusations she coerced employees in her office to volunteer to help her with political activities.
"It's settling a score," Swanson said during a debate with other DFL gubernatorial candidates that will be broadcast on "At Issue with Tom Hauser" Sunday. "I expect that when I take on these big corporations as attorney general."
Swanson claims "The Intercept," an online magazine publishing the accusations from several unnamed sources and now a couple sources who've come forward on the record, is partially funded by a man who owned a company she sued.
"This is a widely discredited online publication," Swanson says.
However, after the initial story based on unnamed sources, others have come forward on the record, including D'andre Norman. Norman tells "The Intercept" one of his main responsibilities was recruiting and pressuring workers in the attorney general's office to "volunteer" at Swanson political events.
"It's all true, unfortunately," he told the website of it's original report based on unnamed sources.
During the "At Issue" debate, Swanson denies Norman's allegations.
"To the extent anybody volunteers on political activities or political campaigns for me or anyone else they do it on their own time at their own discretion," Swanson said.
On Friday, attorney general spokesman Ben Wogsland, later e-mailed copies of felony charges for insurance fraud filed against Norman in 2014. Norman was fired from the attorney general's office after those chargers were filed, even though the case was later dropped.
Swanson's opponents are not convinced by her denials.
"I'm deeply concerned and we'll find out," Tim Walz said during the debate. "I'm concerned though when the first response is something is 'fake news.'"
Erin Murphy expressed her own doubts.
"This is a question for the voters and there's a question for them to consider," she said. "I've learned over my 12 years in office you have to speak the truth to people."
Updated: August 13, 2018 05:14 AM
Created: August 10, 2018 06:43 PM
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