December 10, 2004
The Honorable Thomas Moyer
Dear Chief Justice Moyer,
As of that date, FirstEnergy was one of the top contributors to all Supreme Court races, pouring in $61,100.
We believe a recusal is warranted regardless of FirstEnergy's motives in giving you that campaign contribution. It is instructive, however, to review the chronology of FirstEnergy's campaign contributions to see what they had in mind.
Virtually all of FirstEnergy's campaign contributions to Supreme Court candidates came on one day, August 6: 44 contributions in one day.
Why is August 6 significant?
Here's the background. In the spring of 2004, while FirstEnergy was pushing its $3 billion rate case before the Public Utilities Commission, new leadership arrived at the Office of Consumers' Counsel. The previous Counsel, Rob Tongren had been forced out due to the scandal over the previous FirstEnergy rate decision.
Within days of her swearing-in, new Counsel Janine Migden-Ostrander was
reported to be considering taking the FirstEnergy case to the Ohio Supreme
Court if the Commission approved it ("Rate debate could hit high
court", Jay Miller, Crain's Cleveland Business, April 12,
Can it be any clearer that FirstEnergy was using its money
to influence the outcome of this forthcoming case?
Those recusals were excellent decisions. The FirstEnergy case deserves no less.
Please let me know what you decide to do on this.