House investigators said Tuesday that the computer hard drive of ex-agency official Lois Lerner -- a key figure in the IRS targeting scandal -- was only “scratched,” not irreparably damaged, as Americans have been led to believe.
GOP-led Ways and Means Committee investigators, in their quest to recover missing Lerner emails, learned her hard drive was damaged but recoverable by talking to IRS information-technology experts, after the government originally refused to make them available, according to the committee.
“It is unbelievable that we cannot get a simple, straight answer from the IRS about this hard drive,” said committee Chairman Dave Camp.
The Michigan Republican said the new information also raises more questions about potential criminal wrongdoing at the IRS because the committee was told no data was recoverable and the physical hard drive was recycled and potentially shredded.
In addition, learning that the hard drive was only scratched also raises questions about why the IRS refused to use outside experts to recover the data.
“In fact, in-house professionals at the IRS recommended the agency seek outside assistance in recovering the data,” the committee said Tuesday in a release.
House investigators said they also are trying to determine whether the scratch was accidental or deliberate.
“If the IRS would just come clean and tell Congress and the American people what really happened, we could put an end to this,” Camp said. “Our investigators will not stop until we find the full truth.”
Lerner was the IRS’s exempt organizations director during the period of 2009 to mid-2011 -- when applications for tax-exempt status from Tea Party groups and other conservative organizations were held up for extra scrutiny.
The committee also said the information gleamed from the new interviews conflicts with a July 18 IRS court filing that states the data on the hard drive was unrecoverable -- including years of missing emails.
(AP) - Gay and transgender people who work for the federal government and its contracting agencies now have some new employment protections.
President Barack Obama today amended two executive orders, to ban discrimination against those workers. He said it's unacceptable that being gay is still a firing offense in most places in the United States.
The fight over a gay discrimination ban for private employers has become embroiled in a dispute over whether religious groups should get an exemption.
And ever since Obama announced that he would take executive action, he's faced pressure from opposing sides on whether to allow that exemption in the case of government contractors. He decided to maintain a provision that allows religious groups with federal contracts to hire and fire based upon religious identity, but not give them any exception to consider sexual orientation or gender identity.
(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
The official said the department, though, has “no record” at this point of Ansar al-Sharia moving in next door.
Fox News is told that American personnel also requested sandbags to help fortify positions at the compound because "the only thing in between us and the neighbors was grass and a couple of trees and a wall.”
“The State Department knew it. Everyone on the ground knew it,” one source with direct knowledge of the attack said.
Another source said the sandbags were denied because “making shooting positions was too aesthetically unpleasing."
The threat was so well-known that on the night of the attack, as rescuers from the nearby annex were facing heavy fire while leaving the consulate, they "made sure to make a left turn out of the consulate and not a right turn” where the Ansar al-Sharia house was located.
The revelations continue to raise questions about the State Department response and training of agents, ahead of the attack which killed U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, as well as Americans Sean Smith, Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty. Others were also injured.
Further, leaders of the local Libyan militia known as "'The February 17 Martyrs Brigade” -- which was tapped to provide security at the U.S. compound in Benghazi -- not only didn’t respond to help save American lives, but may have directly participated in the 2012 attack on Americans. This has prompted criticism of the State Department for its original decision to contract with the powerful militia.
According to multiple sources, the department selected the militia over multiple other militia groups, private companies and even U.S. Marines to protect and secure the American consulate in Benghazi, despite the fact that those on the ground questioned the decision. As one special operator noted, “They may have been sold as the best option … but it was a terrible option. Only D.C. trusted them."
Sources also say militia leaders may have helped orchestrate and directly participated in the attack -- even though they were being paid, being fed, given automobiles and even allowed to swim in the consulate pool by the U.S. State Department. Fox News also has learned that the leader of the brigade, Fawzi Bukhatif, left Benghazi the day the attack ended on Sept. 12, even as the consulate and annex were still smoldering and Americans were standing on the Benghazi tarmac waiting to get out.
“It is truly one of the worst outsourcing
Members of the Islamist extremist militia blamed for the Benghazi terror attack had moved in next door to the U.S. consulate months before the strike but “nothing was done” despite concerns about the dangerous neighbors, sources tell Fox News.
Sources say members of Ansar al-Sharia moved to the house just outside the east wall of the compound within three weeks of American personnel renting the facility, and later used the location to help plan and take part in the attack on the American consulate on Sept. 11, 2012.
The neighbors prompted multiple security requests -- including repeated requests up until the day of the attack -- for more weapons and personnel.
“We warned D.C. about the guys who moved in next door, but nobody knew what to do and nothing was done,” a U.S. intelligence source said.
According to one intelligence source, American security personnel specifically asked for an M240 machine gun to mount on the roof at the consulate for added protection, but were turned down repeatedly.
A State Department source also confirmed to Fox News that “they asked for a belt-fed mounted machine gun, but were specifically denied by the State Department because they said it would upset the locals.”
Asked about these assertions at Monday’s press briefing, State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf called the claims “dubious.”
But a senior State Department official acknowledged Tuesday that there was a request of some kind from the Benghazi post on Aug. 22. “It was being considered in Tripoli on the day of the attack. It was contained in a list of security requests, so to say that the request was rejected is inaccurate,” the official said.
Few months ago both stocks were at $25.00. One NTI a single refiner and CLMT with 6 and another coming on line this year. Now CLMT is $7.00 higher than NTI. This was an easy call. CVRR is another one that's been moving higher when NTI going lower. Going to be interesting if NTI can make a ex date move at some point here. I am flat CLMT, long CVRR at 25.12.
(Reuters) - President Barack Obama said Joe Biden would make a "superb" president, but questioned whether his vice president or potential rival Hillary Clinton would want to endure another campaign for the White House, a media report on Monday said.
Obama, in an interview with the New Yorker, said Biden "has seen the job up close, he knows what the job entails. He understands how to separate what’s really important from what’s less important. I think he’s got great people skills. He enjoys politics, and he’s got important relationships up on the Hill (in Congress) that would serve him well."
"Joe would be a superb president," Obama told the magazine in an article on Biden in its July 28 issue, which was published online on Monday.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry was caught on open mic speaking to one of his advisors on Sunday, saying sarcastically "It's a hell of a pinpoint operation," referring to Israel's operation in Gaza.
"We've got to get over there," he said, just before an interview for Fox News Sunday. "We ought to go tonight. I think it's crazy to be sitting around."
Click here for latest updates on IDF operation in Gaza Strip
Earlier it was reported that Kerry was set to arrive in the Middle East on Monday to promote efforts for a cease-fire between Israel and Gaza. Kerry was slated to land in Cairo, and head for Israel on Tuesday.
In an interview for NBC's "Meet the Press," Kerry said Israel "has every right in the world to defend itself" from attacks by Hamas militants in Gaza, but the U.S. is working diligently to get an immediate cease-fire in place.
Kerry said Israel long has endured rocket attack by Hamas, and no nation "would sit there while rockets are bombarding it."
Kerry also cited tunnels constructed by Hamas in what he said was "an obvious effort" to try to kidnap Israelis.
Kerry told NBC's "Meet the Press" that it's "unacceptable by any standard anywhere in the world" and that Israel must protect its citizens.
What he says off mike is really his true feelings. Phoney over and over.
Roomer mill in DC is that Harry Reid thinking seriously of running for President. Guess anything would be an improvement.
Yes, of course he has a couple faults, but what do you guys really think of Craigie? Boards be so boring without him, you think?
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told reporters Tuesday that the Southern border is secure, despite the massive surge of undocumented minors crossing over into the U.S.
“The border is secure,” he said after the Senate Democrats’ weekly policy lunch, according to The Hill. “[Sen.] Martin Heinrich [(D-N.M.)] talked to the caucus today. He’s a border state senator. He said he can say without any equivocation the border is secure.”
According to the Hill, Reid then added that lawmakers should worry less about securing the border and instead focus on approving President Barack Obama’s $3.7 billion request to process the thousands of children who have flocked to the U.S. illegally from Central America.
Reid’s comments were met immediately with criticism from the right. Prominent conservative pundit Charles Krauthammer even questioned his mental health on Fox News.
“When you hear Harry Reid saying the border is secure you got to wonder, you know, whether he’s on his medication or not. That is so detached from reality,” Krauthammer said.
The Obama administration ignored a report to the Department of Homeland Security last year which predicted that a large number of unaccompanied children would arrive at America's southern border in the coming months, according to a published report.
The Washington Post reported Saturday that a team of experts from the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) submitted the 41-page report in August of 2013 after discovering a makeshift transportation depot manned by Border Patrol agents at the Fort Brown station in Brownsville, Texas. The report detailed how thirty agents were assigned to perform such tasks as washing the children's clothes, driving them to offsite showers, and making them sandwiches.
The report said that an average of 66 children were taken into custody each day and more than 24,000 cycled through patrol stations in Texas alone in 2013.
The study's leader, a former Border Patrol agent named Victor Manjarrez Jr., told the Post that the government had little reaction to the report's warning and viewed the situation as a "local problem." Manjarrez added that a crisis on the scale of what has developed over the past several months was "not on anyone's radar [even though] it was pretty clear this number of kids was going to be the new baseline."
Cecilia Munoz, President Obama's chief domestic policy adviser, told the Post that federal officials only realized this past May that the number of children crossing the border would exceed the Border Patrol's original estimate of 60,000 for the year. The Border Patrol has since revised that estimate to 90,000 children by the end of September.
However, one former senior federal law enforcement official told the Post that Customs and Border Protection and Immigration and Customs Enforcement had warned the White House of the potential for a significant surge of migrant children at the border as early as 2012.
Clinton Says He Warned Bush of bin Laden Threat
Thursday 16 October 2003
NEW YORK - Former President Bill Clinton warned President George W. Bush before he left office in 2001 that Osama bin Laden was the biggest security threat the United States faced, Clinton said on Wednesday.
Speaking at a luncheon sponsored by the History Channel, Clinton said he discussed security issues with Bush in his "exit interview," a formal and often candid meeting between a sitting president and the president-elect.
"In his campaign, Bush had said he thought the biggest security issue was Iraq and a national missile defense," Clinton said. "I told him that in my opinion, the biggest security problem was Osama bin Laden."
The U.S. government has blamed bin Laden's Al Qaeda network for the Sept. 11 attacks.
Time magazine reported last year that a plan for the United States to launch attacks against the al-Qaeda network languished for eight months because of the change in presidents and was approved only a week before the Sept. 11 attacks.
But the White House disputed parts of that story, which was published by the magazine in August 2002.
"The Clinton administration did not present an aggressive new plan to topple al-Qaeda during the transition," a White House spokesman, Sean McCormack, said at the time.
The White House was clearly irritated by the report, which appeared to suggest that the Bush administration might not have done all it could to prevent the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.
At Wednesday's luncheon, Clinton said his inability to convince Bush of the danger from al Qaeda was "one of the two or three of the biggest disappointments that I had."
Total BS on Clinton's part, not that he was ever a proven lair, over and over! He had several chances to take BL out and passed.
When a New York Times article cast doubt on the accusation Usama bin Laden had a hand in the 1998 bombings of African embassies, President Clinton questioned his own CIA, according to a note he scrawled to his national security adviser.
The memo, part of a 1,000-page release of documents Friday afternoon by the National Archives, was written after the president apparently read an article in the self-professed "paper of record" casting doubt on the U.S. Justice Department's case that the Al Qaeda mastermind was involved in the Aug. 7, 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. Some 224 people were killed in the twin attacks, including 12 Americans.
Two months later, a federal grand jury in New York indicted bin Laden and 20 others for participating in a terrorist plot to kill Americans. But the Times article, entitled “U.S. Hard Put to Find Proof bin Laden Directed Attacks,” and written the following April, raised doubts about bin Laden's involvement, at least with Clinton.
“Sandy, if this article is right, the CIA sure overstated its case to me — What are the facts?”
- President Clinton, in '99 memo
The Times article came just two-and-a-half years before Al Qaeda mounted the 9/11 attacks. But even though the Saudi terror boss would become Public Enemy No.1 until a U.S. Navy SEAL team killed him in a raid on his compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan on May 2, 2011, the Times suggested there was little proof he ordered the truck bombings in Africa.
“Capturing Mr. bin Laden alive could deepen the complications,” read a line from the Times article. “American officials say that so far, firsthand evidence that could be used in court to prove that he commanded the bombings has proven difficult to obtain. According to the public record, none of the informants involved in the case have direct knowledge of Mr. bin Laden's involvement.”
Not to worry!!!
The federal unfunded liabilities are catastrophic for future taxpayers and economic growth. At usdebtclock.org, federal unfunded liabilities are estimated at near $127 trillion, which is roughly $1.1 million per taxpayer and nearly double 2012’s total world output.
Forbes look it up! Just Google 'Federal unfunded liabilities'.
With your self proclaimed 'brilliance' of politics it would seem your wasting your talents staying home all your life. I do agree with you that living in ones Ivory tower is much better than a basement or closet.
Your saying they flew airplanes all the way from Saudi Arabia to New York. Here all the investigations seem to prove they personally got into this country then hijacked the airplanes. Have you shared this new and Craigie factual information with the Government yet?
" It is a peculiar trait of those on the right that they must demonize folks they disagree with"??? What a joke you are!!! This is what you do with all of your posts "moron"!!