The woman who ran the Virginia governor's mansion under former Republican Governor Bob McDonnell testified today that the governor and his wife appeared to be a happy couple. But she may have undercut the government's case on cross-examination.
Sarah Scarbrough took the stand today and said Bob and Maureen McDonnell seemed like a happy couple, very much in love. That testimony was aimed at the defense argument that the couple could not possibly be conspiring with each other because they were barely talking. When defense attorneys cross examined her, though, she acknowledged that several receptions were held at the mansion over the years that specifically catered to private firms, including Volkswagen, the New York Stock Exchange and Forbes magazine.
"The testimony today that other private entities used the governor's mansion to promote their Virginia business is very, very bad for the government's case," says Rich Kelsey, assistant dean at the George Mason Law School.
Scarbrough also acknowledged telling investigators that the marriage seemed to lack healthy communication and describing Maureen McDonnell as "sneaky" and frequently yelling at staff.