Bruce Lisman: unclear on the difference between transparency and opacity

Hoo boy. VPR’s Peter Hirschfeld got himself some red-hot sound bites from our newest gubernatorial candidate, Bruce Lisman.

Hirschfeld discovered that an out-of-state right-wing “opposition research firm” named Jackson Alvarez “was fishing for information on Lt. Gov. Phil Scott, including transportation contracts on which his company, Dubois Construction, had bid.”

Hmm. Who could possibly be searching for skeletons in Phil Scott’s closets? His potential Republican opponent, Bruce Lisman?

Well, Hirschfeld put the question to the retired Wall Street wizard. And the reply was an amazing display of political fumblemouth.

“Yes, it’s possible. We haven’t contracted for anything,” Lisman said Tuesday.

Whuh?

That appears to be a sorta denial coupled with a tacit admission. But wait, there’s more!

Asked whether it’s possible the records request for Scott’s contracting information could have been related to conversations he’s had with outside consultants, Lisman paused:

“It could be,” Lisman said. “A note to self – I’m going to go find out.”

All righty then. Apparently the Lisman campaign, which has yet to officially begin, is already a self-aware independent agency that may or may not be conducting business without the candidate’s knowledge.

That’s the only way I can interpret Lisman’s reply.

He’s “going to go find out” what his own campaign “could be” up to. Good Lord.

Now really, there’s nothing unusual with some opposition research. Heck, they might find something useful. Maybe Phil Scott’s been greasing John Campbell’s palms for years. (DISCLAIMER: Previous sentence is nothing more than a hypothetical example.)

But the sight of Vermont’s Mr. Transparency dancing furiously around a simple question? That’s priceless.

A note to political journalists: you should maybe ask him how many teats on a cow.

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