In the second day of the redistricting trial on Florida's congressional maps, Kirk Pepper, the former deputy chief of staff to former House Speaker Dean Cannon, provided a window into the friendly and revolving world between political consultants and legislative staff.
Under oath in the second day of the trial in Leon County Circuit Court, Pepper acknowledged for the first time that he not only supplied maps to political consultant and friend Marc Reichelderfer before they were available to public, he supplied them on two flash drives.
Reichelderfer, a consultant to Cannon, testified Monday that he did not know how he obtained the maps although he did recall receiving some from Pepper. Pepper has since gone to work for Capitol Insight, the lobbying firm founded by Cannon.
Why was it acceptable for a House insider provide the work product of the House legislative staff to a political operative before the public had access?
"In hindsight I wouldn’t do that again but it was intended to help a friend who was cut out of the process [from which] he makes his living,'' Pepper testified. He later elaborated: "I was making him aware of it so that he, as a friend, would know where the political landscape is going the landscape in which he makes his living in. I was trying to do something nice for a friend of mine."