(Toledo, OH) The new edition of the Toledo Free Press features some fine investigative work by Justin Kalmes and Tony Gonzalez on a variety of issues related to the Coingate, Fritz Wenzel, and George Tanber stories.
For readers unfamiliar with these scandals, here are links to information on Coingate, Wenzelgate, and Tanbergate.
Kalmes wrote the first article, entitled "Coingate book proposed," which examines a 20-page book proposal by GOP operatives Jon Stainbrook and Joe Kidd. I have been aware of this document for a short while, and had excerpts read to me, but have not yet obtained a copy. The article highlights some of the rumors floating around on the various Noe-related scandals when I worked on Wenzelgate last year (the Free Press and I decided to spike the story when no sources for these allegations would go on record).
Gonzalez interviewed Tanber and some key Blade administrators in an article entitled "Fired reporter Tanber responds to Blade internal investigation." This is a good overview of the various allegations of unethical behavior by Wenzel, and has some unflattering information about possible conflicts of interest involving Stainbrook's work as a freelance writer for the Blade.
The article also has a quote from Bernadette Noe, who said that the Blade did not contact her or her husband Tom for comment on Blade editor Dave Murray's partial exposé of information about Wenzel.
Gonzalez also examines a previously-undisclosed records request that the Blade made in August 2003 about Noe's coin dealings with the BWC. Blade executive editor Ron Royhab previously claimed that the paper began its Coingate investigations in January 2005.
Finally, a Free Press editorial puts this new information into perspective.
I am glad that this information has reached the general public, so that people can have a more complete picture of the various allegations of unethical and illegal behavior.
(full disclosure: historymike is a freelance writer whose work regularly appears in the Toledo Free Press)
Addendum, 7:43 pm: Judge James Jensen denied a motion for a temporary restraining order against the Toledo Free Press to prevent the publication of excerpts from a book proposal credited to Jon Stainbrook and Joe Kidd.