Liberal group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), a self-described “watchdog” organization, has turned on President Barack Obama’s administration for its handling of EPA administrator Lisa Jackson’s alleged use of secret email accounts.
On Tuesday, CREW demanded the EPA’s inspector general, Arthur Elkins, investigate Jackson and other EPA employees for using the accounts.
CREW executive director Melanie Sloan said in a statement announcing the demand that Jackson’s “practice of using fictitious email accounts to conduct official EPA business, shielding the contents from public view, conflicts directly with her responsibility to follow federal records law.”
“The fact that others may have engaged in such conduct before her tenure is no justification,” Sloan said. “‘Everybody does it,’ is an excuse for kindergarteners, not cabinet officials.”
“Complying with the Federal Records Act is not optional,” Sloan added. “The EPA’s illegal and devious practices undermine the ability of Congress, outside watchdog groups, and citizens alike to request and receive full information from the agency. The IG should investigate immediately to ensure messages are being properly saved and learn what, exactly, it is that Administrator Jackson and other EPA employees are trying to hide from the American public.”
According to Competitive Enterprise Institute senior fellow Chris Horner’s new book, “The Liberal War on Transparency,” Jackson created an alias email account under the name “Richard Windsor,” which she used in an apparent effort to hide her activities while on the job.
“That is the name — sorry, one of the alias names — used by Obama’s radical EPA chief to keep her email from those who ask for it,” Horner told The Daily Caller News Foundation. (RELATED: EPA chief’s secret email alias found in previously released emails)
CREW, which is partially funded by left-wing billionaire George Soros, touts itself as a “non-partisan” ethics and watchdog organization. But its behavior during Obama’s tenure as president suggests otherwise.
For instance, during the heat of the congressional investigation into Operation Fast and Furious, Sloan used CREW to attack House oversight committee chairman Republican Rep. Darrell Issa.
CREW accused Issa of illegal activity for using the “Speech or Debate” clause to slip Fast and Furious wiretap application documents into the congressional record, so that the public could see them.
Sloan admitted to TheDC, however, that she didn’t even the read the documents Issa put in the record. Those documents proved Attorney General Eric Holder was misleading Congress, by showing that senior Justice Department officials had approved the gunwalking operation that led to the murders of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry and hundreds of Mexican citizens.
Holder has continually blamed officials in Phoenix, claiming the gunwalking was a local operation and saying his Justice Department had nothing do with it. (RELATED: Soros group encourages Wal-Mart workers to strike on Black Friday)
An Issa spokesperson told TheDC at the time that “[i]t is shameful that an organization purporting to support good and transparent government is instead making itself complicit in an effort to cover-up a reckless government effort that contributed to the death of a Border Patrol agent. While CREW’s liberal leanings and dependence on anonymous donors have long been known, this latest action further exposes the naked partisan nature of an organization run by Democratic operatives.”