HHS: Hey, some of our e-mails Congress wants are missing too

posted at 10:41 am on August 8, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

It’s an epidemic! Or so it seems in the most transparent administration ever, anyway. Congress has been probing the disastrous rollout of ObamaCare, to find out exactly how the Department of Health and Human Services could have botched the job with three and a half years and nearly a billion dollars to spend. Once again, key records that are required to be retained have been deleted before investigators could see them:

A top U.S. healthcare official involved in the botched rollout of the website HealthCare.gov may have deleted some emails that were later sought by Republican congressional investigators, administration officials said on Thursday.

The emails were from a public email account maintained by Marilyn Tavenner, who heads the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) agency chiefly responsible for implementing President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law.

What excuse did the Obama administration give? The same excuse as with the IRS:

The letter made no reference to any evidence that Tavenner intentionally hid or destroyed the emails. An administration official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, attributed the potential loss to “sloppy record keeping”.

Tavenner is no low-level employee from an office in Cincinnati. She ran the agency responsible for the creation of Healthcare.gov and for the waste of hundreds of millions of dollars in its failure. Despite the failure of Healthcare.gov and the disaster of the rollout of the Obama administration’s central policy project, Tavenner still inexplicably remains head of CMS — and perhaps her “sloppy record keeping” might be one reason why.

This isn’t merely inconvenient. It’s a violation of federal records retention law. As a high-ranking politically-appointed official, it’s even more incumbent on Tavenner to abide by these statutes and provide a clear record of her professional communications. Congress has the authority to oversee those operations, and the e-mail record is in the final analysis owned by taxpayers, not Tavenner. She had no business deleting e-mails relating to her job, and Tavenner cannot have been ignorant of those requirements at her level. Deletion of e-mails relating to the failures of ObamaCare has to be presumed to have been deceptive.

Katie Pavlich reports on the response from House Oversight chair Darrell Issa:

“Today’s news that a senior HHS executive destroyed emails relevant to a congressional investigation means that the Obama Administration has lost or destroyed emails for more than 20 witnesses, and in each case, the loss wasn’t disclosed to the National Archives or Congress for months or years, in violation of federal law,” Issa said in response. “It defies logic that so many senior Administration officials were found to have ignored federal record keeping requirements only after Congress asked to see their emails. Just this week, my staff followed up with HHS, who has failed to comply with a subpoena from ten months ago. Even at that point, the administration did not inform us that there was a problem with Ms. Tavenner’s email history. Yet again, we discover that this Administration will not be forthright with the American people unless cornered.”

What does this tell us? It tells us that Congress needs to keep looking into these issues. Bureaucrats don’t keep losing records unless they have a reason to make sure those records have to be kept out of sight.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Gosh, who could have predicted this?! Total surprise.

MTF on August 8, 2014 at 10:44 AM

We need to fire everyone in Washington with a higher rank than janitor.

Doc Holliday on August 8, 2014 at 10:45 AM

Tell the IRS that you “keep sloppy records” too.

Schadenfreude on August 8, 2014 at 10:46 AM

We’re gonna need a bigger prison.

Jaibones on August 8, 2014 at 10:46 AM

We’re gonna need a bigger prison.

Jaibones on August 8, 2014 at 10:46 AM

Re-open Alcatraz.

ConstantineXI on August 8, 2014 at 10:49 AM

Martha Stewart went to prison. Just sayin’

Mimzey on August 8, 2014 at 10:50 AM

Some reporter on morning Joe insist nothing evil here just out of date systems and procedures

Puhleeze

cmsinaz on August 8, 2014 at 10:50 AM

“It defies logic that so many senior Administration officials were found to have ignored federal record keeping requirements only after Congress asked to see their emails.

Laws do not apply to federal bureaucrats. laws only exist to keep the peasants in line when they do things federal bureaucrats, in their infinite wisdom, do not like.

rbj on August 8, 2014 at 10:50 AM

verbalduece to be along to defend this in 3..2..

HumpBot Salvation on August 8, 2014 at 10:52 AM

If they had more money they could do a better job…

d1carter on August 8, 2014 at 10:53 AM

Luckily our founding fathers didn’t have email………

That Constitution……

vaporware…..

Oh wait…..

Electrongod on August 8, 2014 at 10:53 AM

It sure would be nice to have a vibrant opposition party campaigning on cleaning this mess up and holding the people responsible for the mess accountable.

DanMan on August 8, 2014 at 10:54 AM

Some reporter on morning Joe insist nothing evil here just out of date systems and procedures

Puhleeze

cmsinaz on August 8, 2014 at 10:50 AM

Yeah, and explain the other 20 or so employees under investigation whose e-mails have mysteriously vanished.

Doughboy on August 8, 2014 at 10:56 AM

An unimpressed Janet “BBQ” Reno scoffed, “I’d ‘a burned ‘em faster than Davidians at Waco….”

viking01 on August 8, 2014 at 10:57 AM

It sure would be nice to have a vibrant opposition party campaigning on cleaning this mess up and holding the people responsible for the mess accountable.

DanMan on August 8, 2014 at 10:54 AM

That is a sure fire winning campaign strategy……..so of course the r’s won’t use it because it would be racist or something.

VegasRick on August 8, 2014 at 10:57 AM

In the Obama administration having sloppy work habits is a benefit/feature…a very necessary benefit/feature. Give Dear Mary a raise and more responsibility!!

Deano1952 on August 8, 2014 at 10:59 AM

Lois Lerner may just have found her cell mate.

txdoc on August 8, 2014 at 10:59 AM

We’re gonna need a bigger prison longer rope.

Jaibones on August 8, 2014 at 10:46 AM

YMMV…

JohnGalt23 on August 8, 2014 at 10:59 AM

Yeah, and explain the other 20 or so employees under investigation whose e-mails have mysteriously vanished.

Doughboy on August 8, 2014 at 10:56 AM

Yet some real “low level” clerk still has a couple of XXX rated emails that he received 12 years ago.

VegasRick on August 8, 2014 at 11:00 AM

She looks like the kicker’s mom in Ace Ventura: Pet Detective.

Laces out!

Ward Cleaver on August 8, 2014 at 11:00 AM

It sure would be nice to have a vibrant opposition party campaigning on cleaning this mess up and holding the people responsible for the mess accountable.

DanMan on August 8, 2014 at 10:54 AM

With today’s moronic electorate and low information voter…meh!!

Deano1952 on August 8, 2014 at 11:01 AM

It’s basic government: if some is good, more is better. And so far, losing e-mails has been very good.

PersonFromPorlock on August 8, 2014 at 11:01 AM

This ain’t nothing.

Wait till January 2017. If it’s a Republican administration, they are going to be throwing documents into bonfires in 55 gallon drums.

kurtzz3 on August 8, 2014 at 11:02 AM

“It defies logic that so many senior Administration officials were found to have ignored federal record keeping requirements only after Congress asked to see their emails.

It has nothing to do with “logic” and everything to do with CORRUPTION.

GarandFan on August 8, 2014 at 11:02 AM

Where is that damn Cozmo? Never around when you want hi. https://fbcdn-sphotos-a-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-xpa1/t1.0-9/s480x480/10347717_699567893445367_2342670907671050097_n.jpg

katy the mean old lady on August 8, 2014 at 11:02 AM

They have ignored a congressional subpoena for 10 months? Seriously? What the hell is Issa doing? Why have they not charged people with obstruction or whatever they can? SHeesh!!

JAM on August 8, 2014 at 11:03 AM

What does this tell us?

Nothing. Issa will keep grandstanding while getting nothing done and the administration will keep laughing out loud.

Walter L. Newton on August 8, 2014 at 11:05 AM

Crickets Doughboy

Crickets

cmsinaz on August 8, 2014 at 11:06 AM

How unfortunate for the left that our Constitution wasn’t created in a pdf file and kept stored on a White House server.

Rest assured, that would be missing too.

Now that I think of it, I’ve have the feeling of late that it is missing.

fogw on August 8, 2014 at 11:08 AM

In hindsight, if laws weren’t previously written in a way to force them to make such difficult decisions in an attempt to hide potentially illegal activities then we wouldn’t even be discussing this.

rogerb on August 8, 2014 at 11:11 AM

They have ignored a congressional subpoena for 10 months? Seriously? What the hell is Issa doing? Why have they not charged people with obstruction or whatever they can? SHeesh!!

JAM on August 8, 2014 at 11:03 AM

My thoughts exactly. It appears that our only hope is if Judicial Watch (or some other organization) files a lawsuit. A district court judge recently ordered the administration to provide a log of communications related to Fast & Furious that were withheld under claim of executive privilege.

And, once again, deletion of emails from a user’s computer doesn’t mean they’re gone forever. Are Issa and company not familiar with this concept?

Boy, those gubmint employees in Cincinnati seem to have lots of email problems!

Syzygy on August 8, 2014 at 11:11 AM

We did have a Constitution before Sandy Burglar stuffed it in his pants…

viking01 on August 8, 2014 at 11:12 AM

What does this tell us? It tells us that Congress needs to keep looking into these issues.

Ooh,looking into it, eh? I bet those bureaucrats are quaking in their boots, Ed.

What these people need is some jail time.

spinach.chin on August 8, 2014 at 11:14 AM

Check to see if they had a pen and a phone. If they did, we know it is permissible to ignore the law. We have that from the highest office in the land, so it must apply to everyone equally.

Wino on August 8, 2014 at 11:17 AM

Issa will keep grandstanding while getting nothing done and the administration will keep laughing out loud.

Walter L. Newton on August 8, 2014 at 11:05 AM

Exactly.

Wake me up when someone is in shackles.

faraway on August 8, 2014 at 11:19 AM

In hindsight, if laws weren’t previously written in a way to force them to make such difficult decisions in an attempt to hide potentially illegal activities then we wouldn’t even be discussing this.

rogerb on August 8, 2014 at 11:11 AM

Exactly. That’s why those laws were written in the first place. Someone saw this rouge administration coming and tried to protect us from it. I wish these guys would do their jobs and start arresting people on obstruction.

VegasRick on August 8, 2014 at 11:20 AM

What I really want to know is why are NONE of these officials’ accounts automatically backed up or a copy of every email was not sent to an archival server.

They seem to be saying that they didn’t know they should save their email. Really? It’s all official government communication (or should be). Officials should never, ever have to “remember” to save their email or even think about backing it up.

Thousands of business are required to do this, and/or they just do it to protect their own a$$ down the road.

Is our government in the technological stone age? Stupid question, I know…

HilliardPatriot on August 8, 2014 at 11:21 AM

And this kind of second grade idiocy will continue
as long as no Republican in DC stands up and says
“You are being charged with..”

I have never seen such a group of gutless parasites.

ToddPA on August 8, 2014 at 11:23 AM

You’re right Ed Morrissey keep looking for records, BUT it’s time to start prosecution for termination (without benefits), fines and jail time on these people. I am sure the government sends out letter each year to remind employees of requirements with a signoff required. Fine the offenders first with a possibility of jail time upon further investigation.
Until examples are made nothing happens. The fines should not require the Attorney Generals office at all.
Let’s do something Congress stand up.

Release on August 8, 2014 at 11:24 AM

It sure would be nice to have a vibrant opposition party campaigning on cleaning this mess up and holding the people responsible for the mess accountable.

DanMan on August 8, 2014 at 10:54 AM

It would be nice if we had a press that didn’t call those who are doing just that lairs and racist for trying.

Gwillie on August 8, 2014 at 11:24 AM

Of course, this is NSA’s spokesperson in this case.

NapaConservative on August 8, 2014 at 11:27 AM

It’s not like these tens of thousands of missing e-mails are as important as 18 minutes of tape; after all, nothing bad happened to the president that lost those 18 minutes, did it? /s

As long as the GOP is the party of weakness and incompetence, nothing will change in DC. The dems are laughing their donkeys off at the ineptness shown by the Republicans.

Third Party/Let It Burn

RoadRunner on August 8, 2014 at 11:28 AM

Congress needs to act. It is obvious that even with current records laws and this executive branch that no one will be held accountable for missing emails.

Congress pass a law that authorizes the hiring of a singular lone contractor hired to manage all government electronic records to include redundant backup systems.

With the cheap cost of memory these days, this should not ever be an issue. It isn’t for any reputable companies that do this. Issa should be proposing legislation instead of hemming, hawing, and complaining.

Identifying issues without proposing solutions is simply whining. It is obvious that no one is going to be held accountable over missing data in the past, but we can make darn sure it doesn’t happen in the future.

Even if we are able to hold someone accountable for all the missing emails, etc. we should still pursue legislation that prescribes that one contractor will house all federal communications and that any circumvention should result in immediate termination.

airupthere on August 8, 2014 at 11:28 AM

In their defense, I’m not entirely confident the people at HHS even know how to use technology as advanced as email.

RINO in Name Only on August 8, 2014 at 11:30 AM

The emails will surface. They cannot be deleted. When they show up, King Putt’s minions will start going to prison.

dogsoldier on August 8, 2014 at 11:31 AM

The emails will surface. They cannot be deleted. When they show up, King Putt’s minions will start going to prison.

dogsoldier on August 8, 2014 at 11:31 AM

For some odd reason the WH just ordered a stockpile of blank pardon forms. I foresee pitchforks in our future………

VegasRick on August 8, 2014 at 11:34 AM

We’re gonna need a bigger prison.

Jaibones on August 8, 2014 at 10:46 AM

Nah. Just more lamp posts and rope.

Closet Optimist on August 8, 2014 at 11:44 AM

The letter made no reference to any evidence that Tavenner intentionally hid or destroyed the emails. An administration official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, attributed the potential loss to “sloppy record keeping”.

They know about the retention and getting rid of stuff on the regular schedule.

How long we keep data and how we access it

CMS websites keep data collected long enough to achieve the specified objective for which they were collected. The data generated from these activities falls under the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) General Records Schedule (GRS) 20-item IC “Electronic Records,” and will be handled according to the requirements of that schedule (http://www.archives.gov/records-mgmt/grs/grs20.html).
http://www.cms.gov/About-CMS/Agency-Information/Aboutwebsite/Privacy-Policy.html

Here is what it says in GRS-20:

GENERAL RECORDS SCHEDULE 20
Electronic Records

This schedule provides disposal authorization for certain electronic records and for specified paper, microform, or other hard copy records that are integrally related to the electronic records.

This schedule applies to electronic records created or received by Federal agencies including those managed for agencies by contractors. It covers records created by computer operators, programmers, analysts, systems administrators, and all personnel with access to a computer. Disposition authority is provided for certain master files, including some tables that are components of data base management systems, and certain files created from master files for specific purposes. In addition, this schedule covers certain electronic records produced by end users in office automation applications. These disposition authorities apply to the categories of electronic records described in GRS 20, regardless of the type of computer used to create or store these records.

14. Electronic Mail Records.

Senders’ and recipients’ versions of electronic mail messages that meet the definition of Federal records, and any attachments to the record messages after they have been copied to an electronic recordkeeping system, paper, or microform for recordkeeping purposes.

Delete from the e-mail system after copying to a recordkeeping system. (N1-GRS-95-2 item 14)

[NOTE: Along with the message text, the recordkeeping system must capture the names of sender and recipients and date (transmission data for recordkeeping purposes) and any receipt data when required. (N1-GRS-95-2 item 14 Note)]

Crickets from the LSM.

Patriot Vet on August 8, 2014 at 11:45 AM

The emails will surface. They cannot be deleted. When they show up, King Putt’s minions will start going to prison.

dogsoldier on August 8, 2014 at 11:31 AM

For some odd reason the WH just ordered a stockpile of blank pardon forms. I foresee pitchforks in our future………

VegasRick on August 8, 2014 at 11:34 AM

Strip them of their immunity and charge them with state crimes.

Obama can’t pardon someone for anything but federal crimes. Fraud, criminal conspiracy, and obstruction of justice are crimes in all 57 states, even OIHO and RSPECT.

ConstantineXI on August 8, 2014 at 11:45 AM

Dude, this is like so 18 years ago. See if any of this story from the NYT sounds familiar. It is an indicator of how documents are going to surface in the future.

After nearly two years of searches and subpoenas, the White House said this evening that it had unexpectedly discovered copies of missing documents from Hillary Rodham Clinton’s law firm that describe her work for a failing savings and loan association in the 1980′s……..

……The newly discovered documents are copies of billing records from the Rose firm, where Mrs. Clinton helped represent Madison Guaranty, a savings and loan run by James B. McDougal, the Clintons’ business partner in the Whitewater land venture. The originals are still missing. Investigators have been seeking the documents to determine the role Mrs. Clinton played in the firm’s representation of the savings and loan……….

………Henry F. Schuelke, a lawyer for Mrs. Huber, said tonight that she found the records in a storage area in the third-floor private residence at the White House where unsolicited gifts to the President and First Lady are stored before being sorted and catalogued…..

……Mr. Schuelke said Mrs. Huber did not know who placed the records in the storage area or how long the material might have been there. “It could have been there for months,” he said. “She has no idea how long it was there.” ……

……..Mr. Kendall declined to say why Mrs. Huber had been going through the files or how the Rose documents could have come into the possession of the White House in the first place. He also declined to answer questions about why they were not discovered sooner…….

…….. Last Sunday the statute of limitations expired for a variety of civil lawsuits that may be brought against professionals who fraudulently advised corrupt savings associations

Catch that last bit? Documents long sought by prosecutors found their way to the public AFTER Bill and Killary couldn’t be charged.

Happy Nomad on August 8, 2014 at 11:46 AM

Why would we need bigger prisons, no one is going to be sent there.

The cop was right, if the big dogs don’t follow the law why should the rest of us, why have the laws at all?

Any of you big gov loving lefties want to explain how more of THIS is so cool?

Bishop on August 8, 2014 at 11:47 AM

The cop was right, if the big dogs don’t follow the law why should the rest of us, why have the laws at all?

Any of you big gov loving lefties want to explain how more of THIS is so cool?

Bishop on August 8, 2014 at 11:47 AM

Schadenfreude on August 8, 2014 at 11:52 AM

Ed, I feel for you. With all the havoc that FF* has wreaked on the world that is now coming to the fore and the wall to wall coverage that those events demand, it must be difficult to keep up with all the havoc that FF* has wreaked on America.

Your hard work in times like these is much appreciated.
————
*FvckFace is what Mrs. NOMOBO and I call our preznit. We have found there is no better way to describe him.

NOMOBO on August 8, 2014 at 11:54 AM

Strip them of their immunity and charge them with state crimes.

Obama can’t pardon someone for anything but federal crimes. Fraud, criminal conspiracy, and obstruction of justice are crimes in all 57 states, even OIHO and RSPECT.

ConstantineXI on August 8, 2014 at 11:45 AM

I like the idea. Fraud, criminal conspiracy, and obstruction of justice may be crimes in all 57 states but I think DC approves of those things.

VegasRick on August 8, 2014 at 11:54 AM

It is a violation of federal records law. But, what it was is an attempt to hide a bigger violation. That of the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR). Those emails probably show that Tavenner, when choosing a contractor to build the website, did it sole source and not as a competitive bid, as the FAR’s call for. If we can find the emails I suspect they could reveal the inside deals she went through to secure CGI for the federal website build. And then we can guess, that because of the total clusterfark it was, that her agency exhibited criminal negligence in performing over site on the contract. Thereby violating more laws and regulations. That my friends may be the next layer of the onion as we peal back the inner workings of obummer care.

jake49 on August 8, 2014 at 11:55 AM

Verba, where for art thou, you’re one of the first to always jump in to rant “Fake! GOP lies! Witch hunt!”

How exactly did not one but two high-ranking officials from two different mega-bureaucracies manage to “lose” the EXACT emails which the investigative committee wanted to see? Not all their emails, not personal ones, administrative emails concerning the very actions under investigation?

You apparatchiks make me sick the way you defend this shiite. Keep in mind if the fascists can protect their big people with no repercussions they can sure as hell bury a little guy like you without even blinking.

Bishop on August 8, 2014 at 11:56 AM

We need to start throwing some people in jail. Maybe that will help jog some memories.

How are emails EVER lost? What is this Cloud thing I keep hearing about?

Spiders from Mars on August 8, 2014 at 11:57 AM

The cop was right, if the big dogs don’t follow the law why should the rest of us, why have the laws at all?

Any of you big gov loving lefties want to explain how more of THIS is so cool?

Bishop on August 8, 2014 at 11:47 AM

Because…. Obama!….. Shut up racist!

Happy Nomad on August 8, 2014 at 11:57 AM

Seeing as how we are now stuck with liberal bureaucrats, the next Repub White House will try to use this as precedent and suddenly the emails will be on the front page of the NY Slimes, recovered by “anonymous sources.”
If only we could count on a strong Atty Genl who can look at the press and tell them he will be conducting an internal investigation, and there’s no need for for a special prosecutor…alas, no Repubs have any cojones.

DublOh7 on August 8, 2014 at 12:01 PM

at the very least can’t somebody get fired for violating record keeping protocol? I don’t think it is too much too ask for a symbolic head on a pike. I think that this will cure the “missing email ” problem. We need a message sent: Don’t f- -ck with us.

warmairfan on August 8, 2014 at 12:09 PM

And another thing, dammit, why do all these lying administration women look like bitter, abusive, hatchet-faced harpies?

Every one has the look of that old dishrag from Pink Floyd’s video “The Wall”, pointing her withered finger at the piece of gristle on the plate.

Bishop on August 8, 2014 at 12:15 PM

What this shows me is that the person who needs to be impeached isn’t Obama, but Holder. The fact he is silent on all these episodes tells you everything we need to know.

He is the top legal enforcement officer in the US and he simply turns his head and looks the other way to what are crimes committed by government officials.

Tater Salad on August 8, 2014 at 12:19 PM

HHS’s policy for record retention:

4. Policy

It is HHS Policy to preserve all official Federal records in accordance with applicable statutory and regulatory requirements, and to promote access to information by staff, partners, and the public, as appropriate. The adequate and proper management of emails which meet the criteria of Federal records is an ongoing and active process of every office and should not be addressed only when an employee transfers (within the function; within the OPDIV/STAFFDIV; within the Department; between Departments; from Federal to State or local Governments, etc.) or when the email mailbox is full. Each office within HHS is required to establish and maintain Federal record information contained in email or records transmitted by an electronic mail system in a manner that will meet the following minimum requirements:

4.1 Manage Federal records created in or transmitted using electronic mail systems in accordance with 36 CFR part 1234.24. This includes instant messages and PDA contents that are Federal records and non-records.

4.2 Preserve transmission data (name(s) of sender and addressee(s) and date the message was sent) for all records contained in or transmitted by an electronic mail system.

4.3 Expand records that were transmitted using an electronic mail system addressed to a distribution list (DL) whereby the actual addressees were not visible, so that all names are visible prior to filing the record in a record system. A complete list of the addresses of the electronically transmitted record must be maintained with the record copy to ensure identification of the sender and the addressee(s) of the record. This DL expansion is the responsibility of the sender of the record and is part of the sender’s Federal record.

HHS secretary needs to be brought before the committee, along with their Deputy Assistant Secretary for Information Technology/HHS Chief Information Officer.

36 CFR Ch. XI § 1234.24

Patriot Vet on August 8, 2014 at 12:20 PM

Scholars will look upon this administration as the most corrupt, depraved in history.

itsspideyman on August 8, 2014 at 12:20 PM

It does NOT take $1 billion to build a non-functional website. Companies do it all of the time for much less. This does not even include the million wasted on state websites that are non-functional. The question, perhaps to be answered in lost emails, is where did the money really go? Into Democrat campaign coffers?

Techster64 on August 8, 2014 at 12:26 PM

The GOP needs to turn the tables on the Dem’s and run on “The Democrat, Big Government, Culture of Corruption” for the mid-terms.

Tater Salad on August 8, 2014 at 12:26 PM

The MYTH / LIES about ‘Most Transparent Administration continues its descent in flames … the little oxygen cups have dropped from the ceiling while Obama ‘flight attendants’ continue to try to convince people there is no problem, everything is alright, the ‘plane’ (ACA – that was built in the DNC School for the Partisanly Ignorant, Deaf, and blind) is NOT crashing!

easyt65 on August 8, 2014 at 12:31 PM

VegasRick on August 8, 2014 at 11:34 AM

Yes.

dogsoldier on August 8, 2014 at 12:32 PM

YMMV…

JohnGalt23 on August 8, 2014 at 10:59 AM

The sword is not ours to swing. But make no mistake, there is one who will come again to judge the living and the dead.

Jaibones on August 8, 2014 at 12:38 PM

Come on, you guys are way to tough, it was just a few emails…just a smidgeon…

right2bright on August 8, 2014 at 12:39 PM

Scholars will look upon this administration as the most corrupt, depraved in history.

itsspideyman on August 8, 2014 at 12:20 PM

It depends on who writes the history, but they should….

This is clearly an Administration more Nixonian than Nixon, learned the lessons from Watergate, and has little but contempt and arrogance towards the law.

Athos on August 8, 2014 at 12:56 PM

How can they lose emails? I once tried to delete all my emails texts etc from an ex friend and I couldn’t do it they keep popping up. Years later I still have them despite spending about an hour deleting them from everywhere I could find. The servers are backed up no? Congress needs to subpoena the I T staff. If the servers aren’t backed up why not, it’s their job.

Esperanza on August 8, 2014 at 1:20 PM

What does this tell us? It tells us that Congress needs to keep looking into these issues. Bureaucrats don’t keep losing records unless they have a reason to make sure those records have to be kept out of sight.

Perhaps it’s time to give the National Archives the power to monitor & enforce record-keeping by federal agencies.

From the standpoint of simple political craftsmanship, leaving bureaucrats unsupervised in the maintenance of records that would establish their incompetence or corruption.

This is just another example of incompetent institutional design. Recently we’ve seen the perverse consequences of allowing VA breaucrats to monitor their own performance statistics, essentially giving them the power to control their own bonuses.

It’s not just that we have a hugely bloated federal bureaucracy. The institutions themselves are structured defectively.

novaculus on August 8, 2014 at 1:28 PM

Ask any knowledgeable IT person and they will tell you emails are not process and stored on desktop or laptop computers, but servers, which are backed up. This claim that emails are lost or missing because they are not on personal computers is ridiculous and when is the media and GOP going to start hit back on them about it?

JeffinSac on August 8, 2014 at 1:40 PM

Congress has two powers to put fear into bureaucrats:

The power of the purse. Cut their budget right now; freeze their pay.

The power of impeachment. If the Republicans take the Senate, impeach these people, don’t necessarily need to convict.

If you do convict, pass a sentence of no office, pay, honors or emoluments to be held by the person under the Constitution.

Time to get tough with this lawless scum.

patch on August 8, 2014 at 1:46 PM

Charging some of these Federal employees with obstruction should end all of the mystery missing emails and hard drive problems. Jail time is a possibility still for several.

Amazingoly on August 8, 2014 at 1:59 PM

I don’t care who goes to prison as long as they are democrats working in government. They can pick low level employees, for fun. I want to hear the actions condemned out loud, admitted to, and blamed on low level employees, and they go to jail, for doing what was wrong, as directed by the Obama-types. It’s a lesson. Any lesson will do.

I think low level government workers need to know that these are people who will let others take the fall, and that they cannot engage in politics during their workday with the largess of government.

I think Issa could inform the departments that they need people to volunteer info and emails, and that concealing it will result in jail time. Yup, small people to jail, sorry. Teaches small people not to use their privilege in government to fight their “betters” political enemies. And just maybe, someone will squeal.

Fleuries on August 8, 2014 at 2:09 PM

HHS HIT & HIDE SERVICE

YOU GOT A PROBLEM? INCRIMINATING DOCUMENT OR HARD DRIVE? CONGRESSIONAL INVESTIGATOR? INTRUSIVE REPORTER? WE CAN MAKE THEM DISAPPEAR!!

MONEY BACK GUARANTEE. FULLY AUTHORIZED US GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVE.

MaiDee on August 8, 2014 at 2:12 PM

to Patch

The power of the purse. Cut their budget right now; freeze their pay.

You know, that the House has passed a bill cutting some of the IRS funding, and it is clever. The media hasn’t told you. It is on Harry Reid’s desk with 349 other bills the House has passed.

Cutting budgets ought to be a tool, but last time we saw Obama used the budget cuts to seek out the most painful cuts, and then launched a media campaign to blame the Republicans. And you know, all they asked was that he put off the individual mandate for everyone instead of just the chosen few? And then sent written law, pushing the pain of Obamacare until after the 2014 elections…which he should have jumped at, but Obduracy is the President’s middle name. Barach O. Bama

Fleuries on August 8, 2014 at 2:14 PM

What does this tell us? It tells us that Congress needs to keep looking into these issues. Bureaucrats don’t keep losing records unless they have a reason to make sure those records have to be kept out of sight.

No Ed. This tells us that we need a RICO investigation.

theguardianii on August 8, 2014 at 2:16 PM

Man, I hope Congress doesn’t investigate the company I work for.

No, I don’t think we’re doing anything wrong, but we’re a software company.

It’d be awful if all our hard drives slagged due to a congressional investigation… from what I can tell congressional investigations kill hard drives.

Can we try to make congressional investigations less magnetic int eh future? Maybe get some scientists on this or something.

gekkobear on August 8, 2014 at 2:32 PM

They think we’re as dumb as they are.

They may believe deleting email solves the problem, but nobody in the real world does.

formwiz on August 8, 2014 at 4:37 PM

first if the republicans take the Senate it will not be called impeachment it will be a purge. Charge some one with some thing for all sake. This is all just a joke. you tell them a year in advance what incriminating evidence you want then are surprized that some thing happened to it. get real. Yes this is a RICO case. Our government has become so crooked it should be no wonder why we have lost all recpect in the world.

jpcpt03 on August 8, 2014 at 5:48 PM