By Molly Messick
Laramie, Wyo. – Governor Dave Freudenthal is apologizing for comments he made in an audio recording mistakenly released to the media on Sunday. In an off-the-cuff conversation about Governor-elect Matt Mead, Freudenthal can be heard saying that he is "covering his ass," clearly referring to Mead. He also says that he doesn't think Mead "gets it." Freudenthal seems to be referring to the budgetary issues he's discussing elsewhere in the audio press release.
Freudenthal's supplemental budget proposal would restore $50 million each to local government and highway construction, create new positions at the Department of Environmental Quality and set aside $165 million for Medicaid costs, among other measures. Freudenthal's comments came during a casual conversation with his press secretary. At the end of their exchange, the two agree that they want Mead to be successful in office.
In a long written statement sent several hours after the initial audio release, Freudenthal said he hopes everyone will work together to help the new administration. He also encouraged others to be more thoughtful in their use of words than he was.