President Obama’s nominee for HUD secretary lied to the press about his involvement in a lawsuit over his office’s failure to follow the state’s Public Disclosure Act:
When [King County executive and HUD secretary nominee Ron Sims] was interviewed by a television crew the next day about a $120,000 fine, Sims denied concealing any records or having any personal involvement in the case. He also claimed no records linked him with the case.
“I didn’t conceal anything, so you’re absolutely wrong on that,” he said. “I was not fined $120,000. As a matter of fact, it’s interesting because there is nothing in the court record at all involving me personally. I never was involved in that at all. There’s nothing—nothing regarding my conduct. I didn’t conceal a thing. I did order the release of documents after they were discovered, but I never concealed anything.”
But Washington state court records flatly contradict Sims.
“The office of Ron Sims, King County Executive” was listed as the respondent in a January court ruling. Writing for the majority in Yousoufian v. Sims, Justice Richard Sanders said requested information was withheld from the plaintiff and fines should be levied.
“The unchallenged findings of fact demonstrate King County repeatedly deceived and misinformed Yousoufian for years. King County told Yousoufian it produced all the requested documents, when in fact it had not,” the opinion said.
A $123,000 fine was imposed on the county, and later rejected by a state appeals court as insufficient.