White House offered “guidance” to second witness in LightSquared inquiry

posted at 8:45 am on September 20, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

Last week, The Daily Beast’s Eli Lake opened up a new scandal in the White House by revealing that a four-star Air Force general told Congress that Obama administration officials had pressured him to change his testimony about LightSquared, a company with ties to Obama and his election campaign.  Eli follows up today with a report that a second witness, a head of a federal agency, says the White House also offered him “guidance” by asking him to insert a paragraph expressing confidence in LightSquared’s efforts:

[T]he White House’s Office of Management and Budget urged federal officials testifying before two House oversight hearings in the last month to say they hoped testing for GPS and LightSquared interference would take only 90 days, according to interviews.

The Daily Beast obtained the paragraph the OMB asked government witnesses to insert into their recent congressional testimony, which says in part, “We hope that testing can be complete within 90 days.”

The issue of LightSquared and the OMB’s interest in testimony came to light last week when The Daily Beast reported that Gen. William Shelton, the four-star general in charge of the Air Force Space Command, told House lawmakers in a classified briefing that he felt pressured by the White House to change his testimony on LightSquared. Shelton ultimately rejected the White House suggestions and delivered his own testimony last week.

On Monday, a second witness, Anthony Russo, director of the National Coordination Office for Space-Based Positioning, Navigation, and Timing, told The Daily Beast that he too was asked by the OMB to insert the 90-day timeframe into his testimony before the House Science Committee, but he refused. The hearing originally was scheduled for Aug. 3, then rescheduled for Sept. 8.

Russo says he assumed that the White House approached all of the other witnesses and asked them to insert the paragraph into their prepared testimony.  Russo scoffed at the notion that the testing could be complete in 90 days, and ended up editing out that claim.  While Shelton told Congress that the White House exerted pressure on him to insert that claim, Russo told Eli that he considered it more “guidance” than pressure.

Still, how many witnesses told Congress that testing could be done in 90 days based on this “guidance” from administration officials?  One former FCC commissioner tells Eli that putting a 90-day window on testing would be unprecedented.  For one thing, tests like this take some time to execute, but testing often produces unpredicted outcomes.  In fact, that’s the whole point of conducting the tests.  When those arise, then more testing will be required to resolve the issues discovered, and on a matter as complex as dealing with interference to global navigational systems, 90 days sounds like a ridiculously short period of time.

Congress needs to look into the allegations of witness manipulation on behalf of LightSquared, especially Shelton’s claim of being pressured to make LightSquared look good.  If that pressure included insinuations of career damage for testifying honestly, then Congress needs to shine as much light on the connections between LightSqaured and the White House, and the decision to pressure the military on behalf of a donor.  At the very least, any further witnesses to Congress from this administration should be asked whether their testimony is entirely theirs, or whether someone else told them to testify in a particular manner.

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Comment pages: 1 2

Has Obama touched anything and NOT bungled it?

Washington Nearsider on September 20, 2011 at 8:48 AM

If 0 was a republican, his whole administration would of been in jail and he would of been impeached long ago.

Tuari on September 20, 2011 at 8:49 AM

Coercion.

kingsjester on September 20, 2011 at 8:49 AM

In the immortal words of HA headlines….

DUDE!

gophergirl on September 20, 2011 at 8:50 AM

One man’s “guidance” is another man’s subornation of perjury.

flyfisher on September 20, 2011 at 8:51 AM

C’mon issa, get cracking here, the plate has runneth over with all of these scandals…..
…..impeachment looks more likely everyday

cmsinaz on September 20, 2011 at 8:53 AM

Out: illegal alien
In: undocumented worker

Out: war
In: kinetic military action

Out: witness tampering
In: witness guidance

AZCoyote on September 20, 2011 at 8:54 AM

Hey, Mr. Lichtmann, what was that you were saying about scandal free? More like scandal plagued.

JimK on September 20, 2011 at 8:55 AM

If we allow these charlatans to corrupt the military, our last great institution, then all is lost. These are very sad and dangerous times for the Republic.

rplat on September 20, 2011 at 8:55 AM

You got that right tuari

Nary a peep

cmsinaz on September 20, 2011 at 8:55 AM

I love this: bureaucracy is great, says Obama, when it hurts other people’s investments (“we need a reinvigorated regulatory framework!”, but it really sucks when his own investments, like Lightsquared, are hurt.

The hypocrisy, let alone the pure criminal interference, is staggering. Maybe Bill Keller has something to say about this….

MTF on September 20, 2011 at 8:56 AM

Just now, jut now the MSM is looking into Obama’s financial dealing in 2005, and finding they are full of shenanigans.
Now that Obama looks like the loser, the MSM will begin picking at the bones of the corpse…too late, too little.

right2bright on September 20, 2011 at 8:57 AM

Eli follows up today with a report that a second witness, a head of a federal agency, says the White House also offered him “guidance” by asking him to insert a paragraph expressing confidence in LightSquared’s efforts:

Isn’t “guidance” like this considered “witness tampering”??

nomenclature

ted c on September 20, 2011 at 8:57 AM

Guidance counseling the Chicago Way.

Drained Brain on September 20, 2011 at 9:00 AM

I don’t mind a corrupt government. What bothers me is that this is such a lazily corrupt government. If you are going to be corrupt, at least work a little harder at it.

rbj on September 20, 2011 at 9:01 AM

Right2bright

Arghhhh, those skeletons should have been known….but nooo

cmsinaz on September 20, 2011 at 9:02 AM

Just now, jut now the MSM is looking into Obama’s financial dealing in 2005, and finding they are full of shenanigans.
Now that Obama looks like the loser, the MSM will begin picking at the bones of the corpse…too late, too little.

right2bright on September 20, 2011 at 8:57 AM

Because they know he is dead in the water for re-election. If he had high approval ratings there wouldn’t be any of this coming out.

gophergirl on September 20, 2011 at 9:04 AM

Has Obama touched anything and NOT bungled it?

Washington Nearsider on September 20, 2011 at 8:48 AM

Sorry, but this is not simply a case of bungling. Even though the reference line is true, this is a display of out-and-out manipulation.

Mr. Grump on September 20, 2011 at 9:05 AM

I’m not sure if anyone is keeping score, but I’ve got:

Fast and Furious
Solyndra
LightSquared

on my scandal sheet.

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:05 AM

Before this is over, they’ll send a sub down to recover Bin Laden’s body so they can shoot it again. Because Obama’s a leader and stuff.

Sugar Land on September 20, 2011 at 9:06 AM

The hypocrisy, let alone the pure criminal interference, is staggering. Maybe Bill Keller has something to say about this….

MTF on September 20, 2011 at 8:56 AM

Bush’s fault! Republican sabotage! Unrealistic expectations!!…
-/Keller

VelvetElvis on September 20, 2011 at 9:08 AM

Bill Cinton proved that suborning perjury is not an impeachable offense worthy of conviction.

darwin-t on September 20, 2011 at 9:08 AM

Saddam Hussein’s regime offered “guidance” to people too.

Jeebus, what it will take for the media to finally open up on this stooge of a president we have?

Bishop on September 20, 2011 at 9:11 AM

Aside from the donor connections, I wonder why the Regime is so keen to pull strings for this particular company?

forest on September 20, 2011 at 9:11 AM

Before this is over, they’ll send a sub down to recover Bin Laden’s body so they can shoot it again tax him. Because Obama’s a leader and stuff Osama’s a millionaire.

Sugar Land on September 20, 2011 at 9:06 AM

VelvetElvis on September 20, 2011 at 9:11 AM

darwin-t on September 20, 2011 at 9:08 AM

Impeachment is a way to lose an election unless the crimes are serious enough that almost the whole country can go along. An attempt for this stuff would come across as a partisan hit job. Clinton’s did abuse the power of his office, but the underlying matter was personal in nature. Politically it was a desperately dumb thing to impeach him. It cost the party big time.

We’re going to win this next election if the GOP can avoid being dumb. An impeachment attempt would be just the thing to turn off independents and circle the wagons around PBHO.

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:12 AM

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:05 AM

And to think Richard Nixon got ridden out of town on a rail for a third rate B&E cover-up that actually harmed no one. Where is fairness when we need it the most.

chemman on September 20, 2011 at 9:14 AM

When those arise, then more testing will be required to resolve the issues discovered, and on a matter as complex as dealing with interference to global navigational systems, 90 days sounds like a ridiculously short period of time.

there’s a Ramirez cartoon in that one right there. Lightsquared CEO and Obama standing next to a twitterhead on the new light^2 4G network in wondrous amazement while airliners and F16′s fall from the sky….

what a deal!

ted c on September 20, 2011 at 9:14 AM

Because they know he is dead in the water for re-election. If he had high approval ratings there wouldn’t be any of this coming out.

gophergirl on September 20, 2011 at 9:04 AM

Exactly, and historically they will state that they did “vette” the president, and show us the investigations to his past to prove it…just that they were after the fact and not before.
And add to the fact that bullies like to kick their man when they are down…
They are like vultures, they attack the weak, when they are most vulnerable, and pick at the bones until they are devoured.

right2bright on September 20, 2011 at 9:14 AM

We’re going to win this next election if the GOP can avoid being dumb. An impeachment attempt would be just the thing to turn off independents and circle the wagons around PBHO.

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:12 AM

Agreed, just keep the pressure and the spotlight on what is happening and let all of the information flow out.
Picking off one “underling” after another for lying under oath or lying to congress will be more effective.
We have three solid investigations that should continue for the next 18 months.

right2bright on September 20, 2011 at 9:17 AM

Obama has a lot of fingers in the dyke. By the middle of next year, the whole thing could come crashing down. While the media has helped him keep things in check to date, that will not serve him well because the floodgates will soon open to create an unsustainable current that will flush him out of Washington…

RedSoxNation on September 20, 2011 at 9:17 AM

Isn’t “guidance” like this considered “witness tampering”??

nomenclature

ted c on September 20, 2011 at 8:57 AM

Based on what we know now, I don’t think this was a case of “witness tampering.” Tampering involves a threat of harm, or actual harm, to induce the alteration of testimony.

Coaching or persuading a witness to give false testimony is closer to “subornation of perjury.” I’m not sure all of the five elements necessary for a subornation charge are there. If not, an “obstruction of justice” charge might work.

flyfisher on September 20, 2011 at 9:17 AM

Russo says he assumed that the White House approached all of the other witnesses and asked them to insert the paragraph into their prepared testimony.

If this is in fact true that all witnesses were asked to submit/insert administration text into a Congressional hearing—does this not go under a violation of witness tampering?

Paging President Nixon Obama……some one’s treading on thin ice.

Rovin on September 20, 2011 at 9:18 AM

Copy that mjb @9:05

cmsinaz on September 20, 2011 at 9:18 AM

Obama: lightchanger, lightsquared, lightbringer, you light up my life…I get confused.

tree hugging sister on September 20, 2011 at 9:18 AM

Politically it was a desperately dumb thing to impeach him. It cost the party big time.

We’re going to win this next election if the GOP can avoid being dumb. An impeachment attempt would be just the thing to turn off independents and circle the wagons around PBHO.

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:12 AM

GWB beat Algore in 2000

darwin-t on September 20, 2011 at 9:19 AM

Obama Scandals now pulls 12,500,000 results on Google.

JimK on September 20, 2011 at 9:19 AM

Because they know he is dead in the water for re-election. If he had high approval ratings there wouldn’t be any of this coming out.

gophergirl on September 20, 2011 at 9:04 AM

Exactly, and historically they will state that they did “vette” the president, and show us the investigations to his past to prove it…just that they were after the fact and not before.
And add to the fact that bullies like to kick their man when they are down…
They are like vultures, they attack the weak, when they are most vulnerable, and pick at the bones until they are devoured.

right2bright on September 20, 2011 at 9:14 AM

I’d say they are more like devoted members of the cult of the left rather than vultures.

They wouldn’t be picking on the weak Obama if he weren’t running for re-election and threatening to take the rest of them down, meaning the rest of the Dem apparatus and the MSM as well.

This will all go away, too, if Obama decides not to stand for re-election for some BS reason because, at that point, the Dems will try to pull a Toricelli and stick Hillary in at the last second.

teke184 on September 20, 2011 at 9:21 AM

Legal definition of Witness Tampering:

Title 18 U.S.C. section 1512, makes it a Federal crime for anyone to use intimidation or physical force to threaten another with the intention of influencing testimony of a witness in any Court proceeding. Influencing here refers to the act for the purpose of getting the testimony of the witness changed in some way. However, it is not necessary to prove that a witnesss testimony was changed in any way. A person is found guilty of the offense of tampering if all conditions are proved beyond reasonable doubt.

That the person was scheduled to be a witness in a court proceeding.
That the person used physical force or threat of physical force against such witness; and
That the person did so knowingly and willfully in an attempt to influence testimony of a witness.

kingsjester on September 20, 2011 at 9:21 AM

A Chi-Dem is totally f’ing corrupt?
Get OWT!
///

annoyinglittletwerp on September 20, 2011 at 9:21 AM

Is the public going to be able to trust the results of test done by this company? If ninety days is unrealistic, why put that time frame forward? Are these things independently verified?

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 9:22 AM

Based on what we know now, I don’t think this was a case of “witness tampering.” Tampering involves a threat of harm, or actual harm, to induce the alteration of testimony.

Coaching or persuading a witness to give false testimony is closer to “subornation of perjury.” I’m not sure all of the five elements necessary for a subornation charge are there. If not, an “obstruction of justice” charge might work.

flyfisher on September 20, 2011 at 9:17 AM

oh ok. so subornation of perjury, or something like that. got it, thx.

ted c on September 20, 2011 at 9:24 AM

I agree on impeachment, forget it.
I’d rather see jugears finish the term then be put on trial, not sure for what, they are all damn serious.
No wonder Obama looks like he is losing it. They (the WH) have to know that the LSM is starting to smell blood in the water, other than OBL’s that is.

ORconservative on September 20, 2011 at 9:24 AM

Are these things independently verified?

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 9:22 AM

You doubt that this most glorious administration does everything by the book and totally above boards, comrade?
Doubt is an insult to the Motherland.
Reported to attaaaaaack waaaaatch!

annoyinglittletwerp on September 20, 2011 at 9:26 AM

I’m not sure if anyone is keeping score, but I’ve got:

Fast and Furious
Solyndra
LightSquared

on my scandal sheet.

What? you are only tracking THIS year? How about:

Chicago real estate
Obama Senate Seat (yes, he was involved in pay for play)
Campaign funds over Internet without checks in place
2005 investments – same as those of donors to campaign
ACORN

katablog.com on September 20, 2011 at 9:26 AM

Impeachment is a way to lose an election unless the crimes are serious enough that almost the whole country can go along. An attempt for this stuff would come across as a partisan hit job. Clinton’s did abuse the power of his office, but the underlying matter was personal in nature. Politically it was a desperately dumb thing to impeach him. It cost the party big time.

We’re going to win this next election if the GOP can avoid being dumb. An impeachment attempt would be just the thing to turn off independents and circle the wagons around PBHO.

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:12 AM

I fully understand the political argument, but what about moral hazard? There is evidence that the Administration setup criminal schemes that go beyond anything anyone ever alleged about Clinton. We cannot overlook that level of criminality political gain. If he’s not investigated and impeached (presuming the evidence is there), how emboldened will the next criminal be? If we overlook his crimes, we might as well throw away the Constitution now.

flyfisher on September 20, 2011 at 9:27 AM

That the person was scheduled to be a witness in a court proceeding.
That the person used physical force or threat of physical force against such witness; and
That the person did so knowingly and willfully in an attempt to influence testimony of a witness.

If this testimony had come before Rahm left for Chicago, witness tampering would be easy to prove considering his history of sending dead fish to pollsters and threatening to burn down houses of elected officials.

More likely, it’s suborning perjury because it was a “suggestion” and not a veiled threat.

teke184 on September 20, 2011 at 9:27 AM

Obama is making Teapot Dome look like a mere unintentional faux pas.

coldwarrior on September 20, 2011 at 9:28 AM

katablog.com on September 20, 2011 at 9:26 AM

I was limiting myself to time in office.
Selling the Senate seat is a goodie :-)

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:28 AM

flyfisher on September 20, 2011 at 9:27 AM

I hear ya. As Will Munny said, “Deserve’s got nothin’ to do with it.”

He’ll pay the price by being an unpopular lame duck and getting booted out.

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:30 AM

Obama has a lot of fingers in the dyke.

RedSoxNation on September 20, 2011 at 9:17 AM

Sooooooo not touching that with a ten foot pole!

herm2416 on September 20, 2011 at 9:30 AM

The Daily Beast obtained the paragraph the OMB asked government witnesses to insert into their recent congressional testimony, which says in part, “We hope that testing can be complete within 90 days.”

Was the OMB talking about a GPS system or a mental examination of Obama’s math skills? (hint: one doesn’t require 90 days to decipher)

Rovin on September 20, 2011 at 9:31 AM

I fully understand the political argument, but what about moral hazard? There is evidence that the Administration setup criminal schemes that go beyond anything anyone ever alleged about Clinton. We cannot overlook that level of criminality FOR political gain. If he’s not investigated and impeached (presuming the evidence is there), how emboldened will the next criminal be? If we overlook his crimes, we might as well throw away the Constitution now.

flyfisher on September 20, 2011 at 9:27 AM

I really shouldn’t try to comment from my Blackberry.

flyfisher on September 20, 2011 at 9:31 AM

Unless the MSM start featuring these “scandals”, Obama will not be called to account for them. They are still, at this point, willing to turn a blind eye, even to something as easily researched as the hypocrisy of Warren Buffett and Obama’s Buffett Plan.

kingsjester on September 20, 2011 at 9:31 AM

He’ll pay the price by being an unpopular lame duck and getting booted out.

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:30 AM

This is about the office of the presidency more than the current occupant.

darwin-t on September 20, 2011 at 9:35 AM

Obama has a lot of fingers in the dyke.

RedSoxNation on September 20, 2011 at 9:17 AM

I think you mean dike.

herm2416 on September 20, 2011 at 9:37 AM

For a brutal blow-by-blow account of the FCC’s favoritism toward Falcone and LightSquared, see letter from Ken Boehm, Chairman, National Legal and Policy Center, to Chairman Issa and Congressman Towns.

Mr. Falcone, a hedge fund trader currently under federal civil and criminal investigation, purchased a distressed satellite company to obtain a federal government bailout worth billions of dollars by shrewdly taking advantage of existing loopholes and preferential treatment by the FCC.

Mr. Falcone, who previously was almost exclusively a supporter of GOP causes and candidates gained access and influence to the Obama Administration and Democrats through well-timed White House visits and contributions to the DSCC – weeks before filing his merger application at the FCC. Since then, at virtually every step of the way, Mr. Falcone has received favorable treatment and expedited consideration of his plans to offer wireless satellite services utilizing free terrestrial spectrum that would cost billions in the marketplace.

The FCC for its part, has fast tracked the merger, granting approval with lightning speed in March of 2010. During the entire process, the FCC has cut procedural corners, failed to publicly disclose ex parte contacts between Mr. Falcone, his representatives and the FCC, failed to consider the legitimate concerns of governmental authorities and GPS stakeholders about the ATC license waiver, and as announced last week, ultimately granted the crucial final waiver necessary for LightSquared (and only LightSquared) to begin offering wireless services using free terrestrial spectrum.

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 9:38 AM

flyfisher on September 20, 2011 at 9:27 AM
I hear ya. As Will Munny said, “Deserve’s got nothin’ to do with it.”

He’ll pay the price by being an unpopular lame duck and getting booted out.

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:30 AM

I’m not worried about Obama getting what’s coming to him. If it doesn’t happen in this lifetime, the Lord, whose name he has cynically taken in vain, will have the final word.

What I’m worried about is a system that lacks the political will to do what’s right for fear of losing elections. If that’s what we’ve come to, we are giving future presidents carte blanche to commit crimes. Presidents must be accountable to the law. This would be less of a concern if we had a functioning objective press instead of the feckless servile mob they have become.

flyfisher on September 20, 2011 at 9:39 AM

Reported to attaaaaaack waaaaatch!

annoyinglittletwerp on September 20, 2011 at 9:26 AM

Darn.

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 9:39 AM

I’m not sure if anyone is keeping score, but I’ve got:

Fast and Furious
Solyndra
LightSquared

on my scandal sheet.

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:05 AM

I have no idea, but I do know that you guys come up with really cool names for your fake scandals.

crr6 on July 10, 2011 at 1:24 PM

Del Dolemonte on September 20, 2011 at 9:40 AM

For a brutal blow-by-blow account of the FCC’s favoritism toward Falcone and LightSquared, see letter from Ken Boehm, Chairman, National Legal and Policy Center, to Chairman Issa and Congressman Towns.

Mr. Falcone, a hedge fund trader currently under federal civil and criminal investigation, purchased a distressed satellite company to obtain a federal government bailout worth billions of dollars by shrewdly taking advantage of existing loopholes and preferential treatment by the FCC.

Mr. Falcone, who previously was almost exclusively a supporter of GOP causes and candidates gained access and influence to the Obama Administration and Democrats through well-timed White House visits and contributions to the DSCC – weeks before filing his merger application at the FCC. Since then, at virtually every step of the way, Mr. Falcone has received favorable treatment and expedited consideration of his plans to offer wireless satellite services utilizing free terrestrial spectrum that would cost billions in the marketplace.

The FCC for its part, has fast tracked the merger, granting approval with lightning speed in March of 2010. During the entire process, the FCC has cut procedural corners, failed to publicly disclose ex parte contacts between Mr. Falcone, his representatives and the FCC, failed to consider the legitimate concerns of governmental authorities and GPS stakeholders about the ATC license waiver, and as announced last week, ultimately granted the crucial final waiver necessary for LightSquared (and only LightSquared) to begin offering wireless services using free terrestrial spectrum.

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 9:38 AM

Holy smokes!

herm2416 on September 20, 2011 at 9:41 AM

Darn.

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 9:39 AM

The Lightworker also expects that most loyal citizens not make typos.
It’s ‘damn’-not ‘dam’.
Expect a visit from the political reeducation office soon, comrade.

*I haven’t even had my Starbucks yet. This is gonna be a great day. LoL*

annoyinglittletwerp on September 20, 2011 at 9:43 AM

Spot on KJ

cmsinaz on September 20, 2011 at 9:44 AM

cmsinaz on September 20, 2011 at 9:44 AM

Thank you, ma’am.

kingsjester on September 20, 2011 at 9:45 AM

Presidents must be accountable to the law. This would be less of a concern if we had a functioning objective press instead of the feckless servile mob they have become.

flyfisher on September 20, 2011 at 9:39 AM

Don’t worry, they’re only a feckless servile mob when one of their own (i.e., a liberal Democrat) is in the White House.

In 2013, when a Republican is president again, they’ll revert back to their “watchdog” role, trying to dig up as much dirt as possible on him (or her).

AZCoyote on September 20, 2011 at 9:45 AM

What I’m worried about is a system that lacks the political will to do what’s right for fear of losing elections. If that’s what we’ve come to, we are giving future presidents carte blanche to commit crimes. Presidents must be accountable to the law. This would be less of a concern if we had a functioning objective press instead of the feckless servile mob they have become.

flyfisher on September 20, 2011 at 9:39 AM

Amen, FF, amen. I am utterly weary of hearing/reading “dangerouus/risky/disappointing the base” etc in terms of our congress and their voting “fears”. We elected them to go to Washington to represent us, not to “be afraid” to vote.

herm2416 on September 20, 2011 at 9:46 AM

Del Dolemonte on September 20, 2011 at 9:40 AM

I found a nice family portrait of crr6 :-)

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:47 AM

The Daily Beast obtained the paragraph the OMB asked government witnesses to insert into their recent congressional testimony, which says in part, “We hope that testing can be complete within 90 days.”

Everything I read says 90 days is a preposterously short time frame for the kind of testing that’s customary for the FCC.

Besides that, The FCC is standing the usual process on its head for Falcone. Ken Boehm, Chairman, National Legal and Policy Center: “The usual FCC process is to conduct extensive testing followed by approvals. For LightSquared, the process was approve first, then test.”

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 9:50 AM

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 9:38 AM

I have to tell you, that link makes it appear a lot worse than these little stories about testimony guidance. For an administration who loves nothing more than piling on more regulations, they certainly like to waive them when it comes to their donors.

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 9:50 AM

I guess it’s time for a “90 Day Smoking Gun” scorecard on the testimonies:

Such “guidance” is actionable/impeachable in any nation of laws.

golfmann on September 20, 2011 at 9:51 AM

Holy smokes!

herm2416 on September 20, 2011 at 9:41 AM

My reaction too. It stinks worse than I thought.

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 9:52 AM

The FCC can’t even make out their own PAYROLL in 90 days…

golfmann on September 20, 2011 at 9:53 AM

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 9:50 AM

Yes, it certainly does. This is some deep doo-doo.

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 9:54 AM

The truth will set us free…

Keemo on September 20, 2011 at 9:57 AM

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 9:54 AM

How can he put the nation’s GPS and other telecommunications at risk for donations?

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 9:57 AM

Wow, so many racists coming out of the woodwork. First a 4 star general, now Russo.
These are dangerous times.

smfic on September 20, 2011 at 10:01 AM

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 9:12 AM

I find myself for once saying, I couldn’t agree with you more. I really don’t think a quorum of Americans wants to get to the point of impeachment with any of our presidents. We need to keep hammering these scandals, but let his presidency die of natural causes.

hawkdriver on September 20, 2011 at 10:03 AM

hawkdriver on September 20, 2011 at 10:03 AM

I’m glad to hear it.

P.S. I’m all for getting along if we can put aside our past conflicts. I would like to agree or disagree amicably as the case may be.

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 10:08 AM

No impeachment attempts, control him through publicity and election of a Republican president. I won’t go so far as to say I am equally enamored with all the candidates but I am pretty sure any would be an improvement.

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 10:14 AM

We need a bigger congressman Issa.

How many testified saying that?

tinkerthinker on September 20, 2011 at 10:19 AM

MJBrutus on September 20, 2011 at 10:08 AM

Fair enough and mark the calendar although we have agreed before. I’m sure we’ll disagree again. Probably a social issue. But I’m always ready to offer agreement where I find it or thumbs up a good comment. There isn’t anyone I won’t exchange comments with although there are a lot like that.

I do get flyfisher though also. What good is impeachment if the crime would have to be near heinous to get a majority of American to want to go through with it? But I’m sure thats what the founders intended; to prevent it from being used for a pure political tool.

hawkdriver on September 20, 2011 at 10:25 AM

If a 4 star general and a director of national office for space based positioning, navigation and timing (how’d you like to answer his phone), who should be leaders in their own right, can’t answer a few questions on their own in front of congress, we have a big problem, Houston. Of course, they can, it’s just that the WH wanted this to go through quickly so jobs could be created or saved.

Kissmygrits on September 20, 2011 at 10:26 AM

In addition to the usual corruption, and ideological motive:

LightSquared will function as “a disruptive force” in US wireless “by democratizing wireless broadband services,” the firm’s Chair and CEO Sanjiv Ahuja proclaimed almost a year ago.

forest on September 20, 2011 at 10:30 AM

How can he put the nation’s GPS and other telecommunications at risk for donations?

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 9:57 AM

I guess they feel the ends justify the means. Moral superiority of ‘progressivism.’

As you know, this regime wants to control the commanding heights. To this end, they intended LightSquared to be more than just another player in the wireless market. They seem to be aiming for LightSquared to wipe out ATT and Verizon, and for their new crony to dominate wireless communications. Again, from the Boehm letter:

On February 26, 2010 during the FCC’s public comment period on the proposed transaction, Harbinger filed a confidential business plan document that included certain conditions the company agreed to in order to obtain FCC approval of the license transfer. These conditions included an unprecedented agreement, that, without prior approval from the FCC, Harbinger would not be allowed to provide spectrum to the two largest wireless carriers, and similarly would not be allowed to carry more than a limited amount of traffic for either.

It is important to note that other companies that want to compete in the U.S. wireless phone and Internet market have to pay billions of dollars at auction to use the public airwaves (spectrum), and those billions accrue to the benefit of taxpayers. By contrast, Falcone’s bold plan would build out a national wireless network taking advantage of free spectrum – i.e., at taxpayer expense. Clearwire for instance, has already invested substantial sums to secure spectrum and build out its wireless network.

How could private sector wireless carriers be expected to compete on a playing field like this?

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 10:35 AM

The “90 days” sounds like a rush job. Sort of like that “due diligence” that was rushed for the Solyndra deal.

GarandFan on September 20, 2011 at 10:35 AM

Obama has a lot of fingers in the dyke.

RedSoxNation on September 20, 2011 at 9:17 AM

Sooooooo not touching that with a ten foot pole!
herm2416 on September 20, 2011 at 9:30 AM

ROFLMAO!!!

I’ve not read every comment, but have read several, and as of this time, that I’m typing…I haven’t seen one comment to defend Obama, by Ernesto, Constantine, Rywall, crr6 and several others. What’s up people? C’mon. You can do better. Defend the indefensible to us.

capejasmine on September 20, 2011 at 10:36 AM

How can he put the nation’s GPS and other telecommunications at risk for donations?

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 9:57 AM

I wondered that too. Obviously he doesn’t care about anybody in the US, but that he’s willing to risk the safety of his family just doesn’t make sense. There has to be more to this story…

GrannySunni on September 20, 2011 at 10:38 AM

Obama: lightchanger, lightsquared, lightbringer, you light up my life…I get confused.

tree hugging sister on September 20, 2011 at 9:18 AM

Wasn’t Satan called the angel of light? Just saying.

jistincase on September 20, 2011 at 10:44 AM

This stinks.
When you think GPS, don’t think directions to the local mall.
Think about aircraft safety.
But hey, what’s a few (hundred) deaths compared with taking care of a major donor?
OUT.OF.CONTROL

JusDreamin on September 20, 2011 at 10:47 AM

@ petefrt – Thanks so much for that link to the letter! My head is still spinning!

GrannySunni on September 20, 2011 at 10:49 AM

How can he put the nation’s GPS and other telecommunications at risk for donations?

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 9:57 AM

One possibility: They need chaos, remember? Never let a crisis go to waste and never avoid an opportunity to cause one where you can ride in on a white horse and fix it with more government.

Or it may be that they truly are clueless as to the ramifications of GPS interference. Or it may be that they are prepared to kick this can of trouble they cause down the road until after their donors reap the benefits of an FCC decision. What I am sure of is that they think (whatever their motives) that the main stream media will give them cover for any of these things they do. They are in fact now, doing just that with all of the scandals that have been mentioned a few times in this thread.

But for me both personally and in my job, GPS is a pretty big deal. So I hope it’s considered carefully without this political pressure from the White House which is clearly not objective at all.

hawkdriver on September 20, 2011 at 10:51 AM

GrannySunni on September 20, 2011 at 10:49 AM

My head’s spinning too. I hope everyone who’s interested in this thread will read the entire letter from Ken Boehm, Chairman, National Legal and Policy Center, to Chairman Issa and Congressman Towns, rather than rely on just the excerpts. It’s a blockbuster.

The FCC is wildly out of control.

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 10:58 AM

The question of impeachment isn’t only about Obama. Impeachment has to be considered in a macro way. Impeachment is about preserving the Constitution and the rule of law for future generations. It’s about securing our way of life.

Obama is a clear and present danger and he must be defeated. We all agree on that. However, losing our constitution is an even greater threat than Obama. As long as we have the consitution there is hope for correcting policy errors, no matter how grievous, and restoring the Republic. We will always have another election around the corner. Coming elections should never stand in the way of doing what’s right. How emboldened will the next criminal president be if he knows in advance the GOP lacks the political courage to hold him accountable?

It’s dangerous to ignore flyfisher’s moral hazard argument. That’s a recipe for turning presidents into dictators.

Stayright on September 20, 2011 at 10:59 AM

How could private sector wireless carriers be expected to compete on a playing field like this?

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 10:35 AM

That’s the big story here that pretty much everyone is missing. The whole aim of Obama’s “rural broadband initiative” is to concentrate control of wireless broadband into the hands of one crony company thereby “democratizing” it. make no mistake, other companies are already expanding broadband service to rural areas at great cost and risk. This type of fascism could destroy all of that.

Scary thing is, even after this story has been out for a while now, nobody is picking up on the frightening motive behind it.

forest on September 20, 2011 at 11:00 AM

hawkdriver on September 20, 2011 at 10:51 AM

Did you read petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 9:50 AM link? If chaos is what they want, it sounds like they are getting ready to score big. I don’t understand the lack of publicity but then I know how slowly D.C. moves, unless there are large donations involved.

Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 11:01 AM

So the crooked Chicago politician reveals himself to be a crooked Chicago politician. Who knew?

RebeccaH on September 20, 2011 at 11:04 AM

If we allow these charlatans to corrupt the military, our last great institution, then all is lost. These are very sad and dangerous times for the Republic. rplat on September 20, 2011 at 8:55 AM

DADT lapsed at midnight.

Akzed on September 20, 2011 at 11:04 AM

hawkdriver on September 20, 2011 at 10:51 AM

I’m thinking this scandal has an added dimension: The WH/FCC attempt to use a crony to take control over wireless communication.

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 11:05 AM

I don’t understand the lack of publicity …
Cindy Munford on September 20, 2011 at 11:01 AM

Me neither. As you said earlier, the little bits and pieces of info we’re getting give no real indication of the depth and breadth of the matter.

petefrt on September 20, 2011 at 11:09 AM

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