Wade should reconsider recusing herself from Merger talks.

October 20, 2015

Kelly: Whether real or perceived the public needs to trust the transaction.

Hartford, CT – State Senator Kevin Kelly (R-Stratford) and Ranking Member of the Insurance and Real Estate Committee is calling for Insurance Commissioner Catherine Wade to reconsider recusing herself from any involvement in the pending Aetna / Cigna merger.

At an informational forum in Hartford before the Insurance and Real Estate Committee, Insurance Commissioner Wade was asked a series of questions about her former ties to Cigna and her spouse’s current position within the company. Wade revealed she has appointed an independent fiduciary to control her family’s finances and a blind trust was set up to deal with future vested interests.

Senator Kelly pointed out that taking the steps to put an independent fiduciary in charge of finances, and putting an independent economist in place to evaluate what will come before her department are the proper thing to do.

Sen. Kelly then asked why the merger wouldn’t be dealt with in the same way.

Sen. Kelly stated, “Clearly there is a concern in the public over your role here because of your ties in the past and seeing that you have taken steps to put your finances in an independent trustee or fiduciary and you are going to have the transaction, from a market perspective, an economic perspective, put in the hands of an independent party.

“why wouldn’t we also want to put the transaction in the hands of an independent person, so that we could protect the consumers and public that we represent and make sure that what we do in Connecticut – as the Insurance Capitol of the world and leader in this market – that everything we do is not going to be viewed through a prism that someone could doubt or second guess and take what is an historic merger and have doubt.

“I would think what we would want to do is create certainty and trust in the electorate and consumers in Connecticut, that what’s being done here in Hartford which has not only import here, but throughout our nation, is being done above board, transparent and absolutely no questions can be asked or assailed against it?”

Commissioner Wade responded, “Senator we are going to be following the insurance holding company act which we have outlined here.”

Whether real or perceived, Sen. Kelly believes the public needs to trust the transaction.

To view the exchange, please click on the link below.