2 comments April 11th, 2007at 09:30pm Posted by Eli

Okay, now I’m officially done with the Imus story.

Raise your hand if you’re surprised (AP, via TPM and *xyz at FDL):

The White House said Wednesday it had mishandled Republican Party-sponsored e-mail accounts used by nearly two dozen presidential aides, resulting in the loss of an undetermined number of e-mails concerning official White House business.

Congressional investigators looking into the administration’s firing of eight federal prosecutors already had the nongovernmental e-mail accounts in their sights because some White House aides used them to help plan the U.S. attorneys’ ouster. Democrats were questioning whether the use of the GOP-provided e-mail accounts was proof that the firings were political.

…The announcement of the lost e-mails – a rare admission of error from the Bush White House at a delicate time for the administration’s relations with Democratically controlled Capitol Hill – gave new fodder for inquiry on this front.”This sounds like the administration’s version of the dog ate my homework,” said Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt. “I am deeply disturbed that just when this administration is finally subjected to meaningful oversight, it cannot produce the necessary information.”


[RNC spokesman Scott] Stanzel said some e-mails have been lost because the White House lacked clear policies on complying with Presidential Records Act requirements.

Before 2004, for instance, e-mails to and from the accounts were typically automatically deleted every 30 days along with all other RNC e-mails. Even though that was changed in 2004, so that the White House staffers with those accounts were excluded from the RNC’s automatic deletion policy, some of their e-mails were lost anyway when individual aides deleted their own files, Stanzel said.

He could not say what had been lost, and said the White House is working to recover as many as they can. The White House has now shut off employees’ ability to delete e-mails on the separate accounts, and is briefing staffers on how to better make determinations about when – and when not – to use them, Stanzel said.

So… deleting your e-mail from your RNC mailbox removes it from the server completely, with no backup archival copy anywhere? Fascinating.

Some other thoughts:

Most e-mail exchanges are threadlike, with all previous e-mails and responses included on them. So as long as any e-mails from a thread survive, everything leading up to it should be on that e-mail as well. If there are no partial e-mail chains, then that suggests that entire threads were systematically deleted, which makes the “oopsie” excuse a lot less plausible.

Will there be any visible “holes” where it is apparent that there should have been e-mails about a certain topic, but none are visible? Such omissions would at least provide a general contour of what was being covered up by deliberate deletions.

Entry Filed under: Bush,Corruption/Cronyism,Politics,Republicans,Rove,Wankers


  • 1. Multi Medium » But &hellip  |  April 12th, 2007 at 11:41 am

    […] Okay, I know I said I was done, but there are a couple of strands of Imus apologia that are really pissing me off. […]

  • 2. Ruth  |  April 12th, 2007 at 6:07 pm

    We are looking for an email Czar, and I suggest Rosemary’s baby, aka son of rosemary. The reruns scheduled for the summer season, already.

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