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Audio shows Northam administration criticizing watchdog

Northam’s spokeswoman said in a statement Friday that the whole matter had become an “absolute circus” and condemned what she called “unauthorized leaks.”
Credit: AP
FILE - In this Tuesday, March 9, 2021 file photo, Gov. Ralph Northam, left, listens as his chief of staff, Clark Mercer, answers a question about the investigation of the Virginia Parole board during a press conference at the Patrick Henry Building in Richmond, Va. In a 2020 meeting, members of Northam’s administration, including Mercer, criticized the state inspector general over his ongoing investigation into the parole board and made clear they wanted to keep subsequent findings from being made public, according to an audio recording of the conversation. (Bob Brown/Richmond Times-Dispatch via AP)

RICHMOND, Va. — In a combative meeting last year, members of Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s administration criticized the state inspector general over his ongoing investigation into the parole board and made clear they wanted to keep subsequent findings from being made public. 

That's according to an audio recording of the conversation obtained by news outlets including The Associated Press. 

The recording captured a meeting that took place last year. 

Northam’s spokeswoman said in a statement Friday that the whole matter had become an “absolute circus” and condemned what she called “unauthorized leaks.”