The Oregon Department of Justice said Thursday it will not investigate whether politics played a role in the decision by regulators last year to keep quiet the death of an infant in day care.
Rep. Carl Wilson, the Oregon House Republican leader, requested an investigation last month in response to reporting by The Oregonian/OregonLive. The newsroom found that child care regulators chose not to include the death of 9-month-old William Cannon in an annual tally of deaths posted online.
William died in August during a contentious gubernatorial campaign and just days after the Democratic incumbent, Kate Brown, fought campaign attack ads that labeled her soft on day care regulation.
Brown has said her office did not direct regulators to keep William’s death quiet. State regulators said they did not disclose the death because they lacked clearance from Eugene police, who are investigating the case.
The Department of Justice said Thursday it “has no authority to conduct a civil or administrative investigation” into the matter. But Fred Boss, the deputy attorney general,…