Attorney General Kathleen Kane is facing renewed criticism after it was revealed that earlier this year she hired her cousin, Colleen Tighe, as her executive assistant. Tighe will make $56,665 a year under that post.
The story was first reported by Brad Bumsted of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Bumsted wrote that Kane’s deputy Adrian King defended the appointment and asserted that Tighe was the most qualified individual for the job.
Joe Peters, the Attorney General’s spokesman, also released a statement defending the move and Tighe’s qualifications.
“She has every right to select the staffer who is going to be her closest aide, the person who spends the most time with her,” Peters said. “There’s also a great deal of trustworthiness and loyalty with Tighe.”
This story echoes the revelation from last August that Kane’s sister, Ellen Granahan, was promoted to head the state’s Child Predator Unit. Granahan’s new position came with a raise from her old salary of $69,771 to $83,423. Kane denied having any involvement in her sister’s promotion.
While politicians hiring family to their staffs is nothing new, Harry Truman did it after all, these events could still present a problem for Kane. While both of these cases individually don’t appear to be anything scandalous, together they begin to make a trend that could hurt the state’s highest legal officer in the future if it continues.