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Treasurer Cahill Defends Costly Legal Bills

State Treasurer Tim Cahill is defending the use of high priced lawyers to fight a lawsuit brought by a lottery vendor alleging it was shut out of state contracts in favor of a company that donated to Cahill's political campaign.

Cahill, who is running as an independent for governor, said having good representation is important to winning the $20 million suit, and that he only sought private lawyers when the Attorney General's Office declined to represent him, citing a possible a conflict of interest.

"We're going be very aggressive in winning this case and then going after this firm and its legal team to reimburse the state for all legal fees expended," Cahill said.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Charlie Baker is harshly criticizing Cahill for putting taxpayers on the hook for the legal bills, which The Boston Globe estimates may cost up to a million dollars for preliminary work.

"After Massachusetts taxpayers have been hit with higher taxes and unbridled spending by the Patrick administration, Treasurer Cahill is adding insult to injury by forcing taxpayers to pay the tab for defending him against pay to play charges," Baker said in a statement.

Cahill fired back, "I don't think people who were part of the Republican administration in the '90s, who let the Big Dig run wild, should be criticizing me in terms of how I run the state lottery."

This program aired on December 19, 2009. The audio for this program is not available.

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