BOSTON (CBS) – Lieutenant Governor Tim Murray said Friday there is nothing improper about his relationship with former Chelsea Housing Authority director Michael McLaughlin.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Mark Katic reports

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According to the Boston Globe, Murray and McLaughlin called each other more than 80 times between March and October.

McLaughlin was forced to resign earlier this month under pressure from Gov. Deval Patrick, who was furious after being told of McLaughlin’s $360,000 salary.

At an event Friday, Murray defended the phone calls.

“(I make) dozens of phone calls on a day-to-day basis with lots of officials across the state, including Mr. McLaughlin. Let me say, I was as outraged and surprised as anyone.”

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Patrick stood by Murray and was upset by reporters’ questions about the calls.

“(There was) nothing indicating that there was something inappropriate about those phone calls. I do not believe in guilt by association,” the governor said angrily.

Murray also denied he helped McLaughlin’s son Matthew get a job with the Board of Appeals.

The lieutenant governor said he was glad McLaughlin stepped down.

“I was misled, as were lots of other people, organizations and agencies. As soon as we got the full story of it, this administration took quick action.”

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Federal and state agencies are now investigating McLaughlin.