An investigation by CBS News Colorado reveals how state attorneys general, including Colorado AG Phil Weiser, are attending lavish events funded, in part, by companies they’re suing and investigating.
An organization called the Attorney General Alliance – made up of 48 attorneys general – is at the center of it all. Weiser is Chair of the organization.
It’s a private club that corporations and lobbyist organizations pay tens of thousands of dollars to belong to. Their membership buys them access to extravagant events where they can schmooze the top legal officers for state government, individuals who have sole discretion over whether to sue, settle, or investigate them.
CBS News Colorado received video of the group’s 2021 annual conference in Maui from a Republican group. While its motives are political, the events in question include AGs from both parties.
The video shows Weiser and other AGs at the Grand Wailea Resort, a place billed as a “tropical oceanfront paradise” with “luxurious accommodations” that start at a thousand dollars a night, but AGs didn’t have to pay a dime.
Their stay was compliments of taxpayers and sponsors, including corporations like Google, Facebook, Juul, and Pfizer – all of which AGs were suing at the time. The events have been happening quietly for years.
Now, for the first time, someone with inside knowledge of the gatherings is speaking out, in an exclusive interview with CBS4.
“To me, it’s Ethics 101 that you don’t take advantage of a situation that’s being funded by organizations that you’re suing or investigating,” says Chris Toth, the former executive director of the National Association of Attorneys General, a quasi- governmental organization that provides training and