Another 'Restore Integrity' Gem: GSA's Lurita Alexis Doan
By Lee Russ
Wednesday, March 28, 2007 at 06:38 PM
Remember when the Republicans pretended to be dedicated to restoring integrity to the White House? I wonder how many investigations and convictions of appointed political hacks it takes to "restore integrity?"
From David Safavian to Steven Griles (not to mention Gail Norton) to Scooter to Alberto to Rummy, to....
The Houston Post editorialized yesterday about the fantastic dose of integrity that Bush's current head of the GSA appears to have brought to the executive branch of La Cosa Nostra:
This week General Services Administration head Lurita Alexis Doan will be questioned by members of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on a subject that's become all too familiar these days.
Doan is accused of injecting politics into the operation of her agency, a scenario similar to the flap over alleged partisan motives for the replacement of eight U.S. attorneys by Justice Department officials. At issue is a January teleconference Doan conducted with dozens of GSA administrators. During the conference, a deputy to White House political adviser Karl Rove made a presentation on political polling data.
Witnesses cited by congressional investigators claim Doan then asked the GSA regional directors what they could do to help Republican candidates in upcoming elections. As reported by the Washington Post, one responded that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi could be excluded from ceremonies opening an environmentally friendly federal courthouse in San Francisco. Doan herself then allegedly suggested that a GOP senator be added to a similar event in Florida where former President Bill Clinton was slated to appear.
If true, Doan's actions could violate the Hatch Act, which prohibits executive branch employees from using their positions to further partisan interests. Although the law does not impose criminal liability, violators can be removed from their positions. Doan was appointed in May to oversee the GSA, which administers nearly $60 billion in federal contracts annually.
Doan, a former government contractor, is also under scrutiny for attempting to award a no-bid contract to a friend, Edie Fraser, shortly after assuming her position. Doan had paid companies controlled by Frazier hundreds of thousands of dollars before she became GSA administrator. The agency's general counsel warned Doan that the $20,000 contract violated agency rules, but she continued to press for it. The pact was eventually canceled.
The administrator has waged a bureaucratic battle with her agency's inspector general's office since coming aboard, and attempted to cut millions from the watchdog office's budget and privatize audit functions. She also reportedly intervened in a contract dispute with Sun Microsystems on behalf of the company after the inspector general's office had alleged that the government was paying millions in unjustified charges.
Doan has denied any misconduct and claims she's the victim of a vendetta by agency employees...
For a less than ringing endorsement of her appointment to head GSA, see this article in Government Executive magazine.
The GSA was apparently in trouble, financially and organizationally, before she was appointed. From what we hear about her performance there, including the attempts to underfund the Inspector General, Bush could well have rendered the GSA impotent for a considerable time into the future.
In case you haven't heard, the pope says hell is a real place with real fires. I hope he's right if only so the Bush appartchiks can roast there for longer than it will take this poor country to recover from what we have no choice but to call the Bush "presidency."
Is it me or is the whole "Who's Corrupt In The Bush Regime This Week?" bit getting a might old?
I think of it as a "Can you top this?" game. Poiints are awarded based on:
1. The amount of money involved in the sleaze
2. The number of people affected by the sleaze
3. The number of years it's likely to take to recover from the sleaze
Double points are awarded if the sleazo acheived his/her position by an act of sleaze, in addition to commiting an act of sleaze once in the position.
It is amusing that the term "integrity" is used in Washington, period.
However, at this juncture, it is apparent that Democratics are pointing-the-boney-finger to attempt political genocide against Republicans. That is so because otherwise they would exercise their "integrity" and force the resignation (or complete the investigation) on "Freezer" Jefferson, "Airconditioner" Reid, and "Chucky's Girlfriend" Feinstein for directing BILLIONS in construction to her husband's firms!
And -- that is just the surface, obvious corruption and lack of "integrity" being displayed by Democratics! Meanwhile, every Republican that has come under *real* scrutiny for wrongdoing has resigned . . . a display of INTEGRITY!
. . . and here are the Leftist/Democratics whining about Republican "integrity???"
Irony wry enough to pucker the lips of God!