Former lobbyist and Democrat nominee for governor of Arizona, Fred DuVal, has a long history of associating with rogue or questionable figures across a vast political landscape. The Daily Caller reported Tuesday that one of DuVal’s cohorts was a consultant for Saddam Hussein.
The former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein’s consultant threw an extravagant farewell party for Fred DuVal in 2001, when DuVal ended his career in the Clinton administration.
Edward J. von Kloberg III, who died in 2005, served as a public affairs consultant for Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. Kloberg, also a lobbyist and well-known Washington insider, served as a consultant for longtime Congo dictator Mobutu Sese Seto, former Liberian president Samuel K. Doe among other world leaders. Edward von Kloberg called these leaders “the damned” or “the impossible” to represent.
DuVal had no problem being the guest of honor at a von Kloberg party, or in accepting praise from von Kloberg, as DuVal left the nation’s capital for Arizona after serving in Bill Clinton’s White House and State Department.
“Mr. Von Kloberg’s double penthouse on Cathedral Avenue NW was filled Wednesday night when about 150 guests stopped by to wish Mr. DuVal well as he departs for Arizona,” the Washington Times reported on June 1, 2001. “It all was impressive, even for members of the diplomatic corps, most of whom certainly have seen their fill of ribbon-and-medal honor ceremonies.”
He greeted party guests while “Donning black slippers embroidered with a devil holding a pitchfork,” the Washington Diplomat reported.
“Through Fred’s work at the State Department he occasionally encountered Mr. Von Kloberg, who was known as a shameless self-promoter within the Washington diplomatic corps, at diplomatic receptions and events,” DuVal campaign spokesman Geoff Vetter explained to The Daily Caller, calling their association an “acquaintanceship” and criticism of their relationship a “smear.”
Arizona Republican Party Chairman Robert Graham said Tuesday,“The fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree, and DuVal’s long career as a lobbyist clearly show he’s the product of an era of political back-scratching, kickbacks, and corruption. Fred DuVal is not looking out for Arizona taxpayers, he’s looking out for his friends.”
Tim Riester, who is Duval’s dark money group, created a series of ads which were protested by PETA. The Washington Free Beacon reported that Riester will likely run into fundraising problems if he tries to get money from dog and cat lovers, as he became an enemy of animal rights watchdog PETA for a series of ads created by his company. PETA asked Riester to stop doing advertising work for pet food company Iams Co. due to accusations that the company abuses the animals used in its testing. Riester refused to adhere to PETA’s demands, and continued to work with Iams.
DuVal has also received support from former State Senator Leo Corbert, once caught offering kickbacks in an undercover sting operation. According to the Washington Free Beacon, undercover cops videotaped Corbet offering kickbacks to Teamsters union officials in exchange for financing on a land deal worth $18 million that would have personally netted Corbet $3 million, according to a 1990 article by the Associated Press. The investigators recommended that Corbet be brought up on charges of conspiracy and commercial bribery, but state prosecutors rejected the recommendations.”
Former Arizona Attorney General, Grant Woods, has been dubbed one of DuVal’s most conspicuous cohorts. In 2009, Grant Woods was hired to investigate allegations of campaign finance misconduct involving the Fiesta Bowl, but found no credible evidence. “Husk, the bowl’s former lawyer and chief lobbyist, recommended the hiring of his friend, Woods, in late 2009 to investigate allegations made by former and current employees who said they were reimbursed for making political-campaign contributions, a felony … He was paid $55,000, and he said he gave $20,000 to Husk,” according to the Arizona Republic.
Former Illinois Governor and now prisoner, Rod Blagojevich, has received support from Fred DuVal in past years. Blagojevich is now going on his third year in prison. It’s been two years this weekend since he started his 14-year prison sentence for corruption, including trying to sell President Barack Obama’s former senate seat.
Former Governor of New Mexico, Bill Richardson, has faced corruption charges on numerous occasions. He has also received Fred DuVal’s support.
The age-old proverb, “You may know a man by the company he keeps,” is particularly applicable to the science and art of politics. Fred DuVal leaves a colorful cast of characters in his wake.