Wait…WHAT? Something Is Missing From This Ethics Story….


From the Washington Post:

“Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson put the agency’s former inspector general on administrative leave late Thursday, the same day The Washington Post revealed a congressional investigation’s finding that the former watchdog had tailored reports to the liking of senior Obama administration officials. A Senate investigative report concluded that Charles K. Edwards, who served as acting inspector general at the agency from 2011 until this past December, had directed altering and delaying critical investigative reports and audits at the request of top political appointees in the department”

In that story, we learned that  Edwards, who served as acting DHS inspector general from 2011 through 2013, routinely socialized with department leaders and gave them inside information about the timing and findings of investigations.  The objective, which staff members said that Edwards was confident he had in the bag, was White House support for his position to be made permanent. A year-long bipartisan investigation also concluded that Edwards improperly consulted with top political advisers to then-Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and acquiesced to their suggestions about the wording and timing of his supposedly objective reports. Whistleblowers told the panel that Edwards ordered them to remove derogatory information about the Secret Service in the findings regarding the Service’s prostitution scandal, and also evidence implicating a White House staff member. Other whistleblowers alleged deletions and alterations in other reports by Edwards. Investigators told the Post they were able to confirm the improper deletions and delays in several reports, but did not reach a conclusion on the Secret Service-related allegations because the DHS, which is, as we all know, part of the most transparent administration ever. declined to provide Edwards’s e-mails about the Secret Service incident.

Napolitano, who has jumped to a classic liberal-insider revolving door position as president of the University of California system, denies that anything was amiss.

More from the Post:

“The Senate investigation found that Edwards placed on administrative leave three people who questioned the Secret Service report deletions, including the office’s general counsel, who was on paid leave for eight months before getting another job. The federal office that reviews whistleblower complaints sided with the counsel’s argument that Edwards was retaliating against him for complaints the counsel made about Edwards’s conduct. Edwards was particularly close to members of Napolitano’s inner staff and often communicated more with them than with his own senior leadership team, the Senate inquiry found. Before scheduled testimony in front of a House committee in March 2012, Edwards asked Sandweg, Napolitano’s top political adviser and acting general counsel, how Edwards should respond to questions from Congress about the best way to improve a department program, the report said.”

This story comes after former CBS investigative reporter Sharyl Attkisson described how White House officials intimidate the press into avoiding or not reporting negative events and commentary. It comes as the Obama Justice Department stonewalls an investigation into the IRS’s harassment and political targeting of conservative non-profits. Nothing in the story suggests that the “senior Obama Administration officials” responsible for corrupting internal oversight were disciplined or punished in any way.

You may wonder about the Ethics Train Wreck tag I have added to this post. I have concluded that the entire Obama Administration is an Ethics Train Wreck.


Sources: Washington Post 1, 2






Filed under Ethics Train Wrecks, Government & Politics, Journalism & Media, Law & Law Enforcement, Leadership

10 responses to “Wait…WHAT? Something Is Missing From This Ethics Story….

  1. As though a federal bureaucracy could reasonably be expected to police itself, even under the best of administrations. When you get a cushy job that high up, your natural inclination is to preserve it by not stepping on the toes of those who made it possible.

  2. “This story comes after former CBS investigative reporter Charles K. Edwards described how White House officials intimidate the press into avoiding or not reporting negative events and commentary.” Is the reporter’s name a misprint? I didn’t see a reference to the CBS reporter in the article.

  3. wyogranny

    And they cry about crony capitalism.

  4. Alexander Cheezem

    RE Attkisson, she recently did an interview with Jon Rappaport. It’s available at http://jonrappoport.wordpress.com/2014/04/25/exclusive-an-interview-with-investigative-reporter-sharyl-attkisson/ .

    I’m rather disinclined to trust her reporting on *anything*, to be frank…

  5. Did your Spam Maginot Line get outflanked?

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