“I read the excerpt and said, ‘You have got to be kidding me.’ “
With those words on ESPN Wisconsin’s “Wilde And Tausch,” Packers legend and Pro Football Hall of Famer Brett Favre shared how he found out through the media about allegations that he took $1.1 million from the state of Mississippi’s federal welfare funding for public appearances which he did not make.
“I in no way did anything wrong…or (took) any money. I have never no-showed anyone in regards to speaking engagements, commercials…that’s ridiculous,” Favre said on the show.
“Absolutely 100 percent not true…but we are paying it back.”
But the quarterback said the money came instead from public service announcements.
“It has nothing to do with speaking engagements. The tax auditor was wrong in his work. I do now know where he got that. I (did) radio PSAs, radio commercials, these ads ran for three years. I never no-showed anybody. I don’t know where that came from. I guess there’s an ongoing investigation.”
Favre said he did not understand where the funding for the PSA’s was coming from, and said it’s a question that isn’t usually asked when someone gets paid for a job that they do.
“Do you ask where the money comes from? That’s the same thing with me. I don’t ask (my sponsors) where the money comes from. That’s ridiculous,” he told “Wilde And Tausch.”
He also expressed frustration about how his supposed connection to the situation was shared through the media, and he instead wished investigators instead “would have been to contact us and talked about it, and expressed his documents through the investigation, ‘This is what we have,’ rather than broadcast it everywhere and not give me a chance to give my side of the story.”
“There is no side. I did ads that ran for three years, was paid for it. Not different than any other time I’ve done endorsements for people, and I went about my way,” he said.
However, considering the specifics of the case as the investigation continues, Favre explained he will be returning the money.
“I’ve already paid a portion of it back. (Being involved in taking welfare money is) not me. I would certainly never do anything like that. I know the people who know me know that’s the absolute truth. That being said, we’re going to pay it back.”