Top GOP bonuses in 2006 included $22,500 to Michael Long, a staff administrator to former SenatePresident Pro Tempore Robert Jubelirer. Long took about six weeks of leave that year to work for Jubelirer's re-election effort. Another $22,500 went to Stephen MacNett, the general counsel to theSenate Republicans who also serves as the treasurer of the Senate Republican Campaign Committee.A $19,467 payment was given to J. Andrew Crompton, a Senate Republican staffer who took 14 weeksof leave in 2006 to work on Republican Lynn Swann's gubernatorial campaign.MacNett defended the Senate bonuses last week. He said Crompton and other staffers put intremendous effort on the state's property tax cuts that the Legislature approved that year. Long wasinstrumental in guiding the caucus through a leadership transition after Jubelirer and Senate MajorityLeader David "Chip" Brightbill were defeated at the polls, MacNett said.On the House GOP side, a $16,427 bonus was paid in 2006 to Brian Preski, the chief of staff to former Speaker John Perzel. Preski never went on leave from his state job, which paid $164,000. At the sametime, Perzel's campaign committee was paying him a $60,000 salary, plus reimbursements for traveland other expenses. Now working as a lawyer in Philadelphia, Preski made only limited comment about his activity in aninterview with The Patriot-News several months ago, saying the bonus was partly in recognition of hisunpaid service as the chief clerk of the House after a vacancy in that position.As to his simultaneous wearing of campaign and staff hats, Preski said, "We always made sure thelegislative work got done first, before we did any of the campaign work."
The House GOP replaced computer equipment in 2007, after Corbett would have launched hisinvestigation.Corbett said e-mail trails provided some of the best, real-time evidence about the alleged conspiracyamong the Democrats. Democrats critical of the staging of the probe have argued that Republicanswere given ample opportunity to clean their records.House Republican spokesman Steve Miskin confirmed last week that all GOP desktop computers werereplaced from July 17 to Sept. 6 last year at the Capitol and from Sept. 24 through Nov. 2 at districtoffices.That was when the probe of House Democrats was intensifying. But Miskin has contended that, because all prior records were archived on the Republicans' network servers, no potential evidence of interest to Corbett should have been lost."I can assure you that we have not destroyed any information," Miskin said.
Lisa Ann Deon is a former staffer to state Rep. Matt Wright of Bucks County and has said that Wright'sstaff routinely did campaign work out of his Langhorne district office.In an affidavit from last year that was provided to Corbett's office, Deon stated that, early on, when she became more certain of the firewall that is supposed to exist between campaigns and governing, sheconfronted Wright about his political assignments."I would explain to Representative Wright that this was not proper," Deon stated. "Each time,Representative Wright told me not to worry about it, 'everyone does it.'"The practice continued until she reported it to Republican leaders in early 2006, at which point Housestaffers offered her a job in another office, Deon said.