Why does this sound so familiar?
A Senate Subcommittee hearing today revealed that nearly 36,000 Census Bureau employees were hired despite the fact that the fingerprint component of their criminal record checks was botched. Despite additional name checks recommended by the FBI, the GAO said that it was possible that more than 200 employees hired by the Census Bureau had criminal records, and were in contact with the public while canvassing for the ongoing 2010 census.
Robert Goldenkoff, the Government Accountability Office’s Director for Strategic Issues, said that the criminal record checks were bungled because of poor staff training. Bureau staff with less than 2 hours of training in fingerprinting ruined about a fifth of the 162,000 necessary criminal record checks.
If the properly processed criminal record checks are any indication, the Bureau may have let a large number of violent criminals slip through the cracks. Of the prints that were properly checked, about one percent, or 1,800 workers, had criminal records that name checks failed to identify.
Of these 1,800 workers with criminal records, about 750 had their employment terminated or further reviewed due to criminal records that included crimes like rape, manslaughter and child abuse. Projecting these numbers to the employees with spoilt prints, the GAO came up with the figure of 200 census workers that may have had serious criminal records.
This should ring a bell for readers of Captain’s Quarters. In 2004, Democrats used Americans Coming Together to conduct door-to-door voter registration drives, and ACT hired felons to knock on doors to persuade voters into becoming Democrats. Eventually the John Kerry campaign and the Democrats ended their association with ACT out of embarrassment.
Now, however, it looks like they’ve turned the Census Bureau into ACT all over again. Unfortunately, we don’t have the luxury of turning Census Bureau workers away from our doors as we do with partisan community organizers. In their rush to hire, probably brought on in an attempt to alleviate the unemployment numbers (the money this year came from the stimulus package), the Census Bureau botched a process that private-sector employers routinely employ, and hired hundreds of felons to demand our personal information on our doorsteps.
Imagine how the Obama administration will handle hiring in the public-option health-insurance agencies …