Nebraska State Auditor Charlie Janssen has responded to an Omaha World Herald report that he spent long lunches drinking beer in a Lincoln bar and not showing up at his office in the afternoon.
The paper reported that Janssen was seen at a popular sports bar near the State Capitol ten times over a 20 day working day period.
On Friday Janssen issued a statement to NewsRadio 1110 KFAB regarding the report concerning his office hours and actitivies during business hours. "I am not a perfect man and I acknowledge the reports are true. I apologize to the citizens of Nebraska for some of my choices, and effective immediately I am taking steps to make changes in my personal and professional life."
Janssen also says "while I deeply regret my past actions, I urge citizens to look at the work we are doing in the State Auditor’s Office. We have come in under budget each year I have been auditor. We have uncovered numerous cases of fraud and abuse, saving taxpayers millions of dollars each year. We have helped several government bodies address and correct problems and irregularities so that they can better serve the citizens. We have done the work we have been tasked with and we have done so efficiently and effectively."
Janssen concluded his statement by saying "I ask the citizens of Nebraska look at our total body of work. I am not a man without faults, but I am also a man that owns up to mistakes and will correct them. I am asking the citizens to give me a chance to be an even better State Auditor moving forward."
Democrats quickly criticized the apology. "Nebraska voters did not send ‘Chugging Charlie’ to Lincoln and pay him $85,000 a year to sit around with his buddies drinking beer in a sports bar,” State Democratic Party Chair Jane Kleeb said. “He should remove his name from the ballot.”