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Opinion: For Katharine Wade, a moment of introspection is in order

Terry Cowgill
Terry Cowgill

Terry Cowgill lives in Lakeville, blogs at ctdevilsadvocate.com and is news editor of The Berkshire Record in Great Barrington, Mass. Follow him on Twitter @terrycowgill.

In all the years I’ve been writing about government, I’ve never been able to answer one question: why are otherwise smart people so blind to their own conflicts of interest?

To find a textbook example, look no farther than Connecticut’s insurance commissioner, Katharine Wade. It’s a long story but until 2013 Wade was vice president of Public Policy, Government Affairs and U.S. Compliance at Cigna, the Bloomfield-based insurance behemoth looking to be acquired by the even larger Anthem, a health insurer based in Indianapolis. For eight years previous to her stint at Cigna, Wade headed a lobbying group for Connecticut’s insurance plans.

Wade’s agency has oversight of the merger, which is a little shocking in itself. But the controversy doesn’t end there. Her husband still works as an attorney for Cigna. That’s right. A state government agency headed by Wade will oversee a proposed merger involving her husband’s employer, which is also her previous employer and a company she used to represent as a lobbyist. Got that?

See the complete story at CT News Junkie.

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