Ed Morrissey details yet another example of Barack Obama’s duplicity on the issue of “abuse of power.” This time it’s over the issue of Obama’s forceful removal of the AmeriCorps Inspector General … over an investigation into a Obama supporter and Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson “into the misuse of federal grants by a nonprofit education group that Johnson headed.”
The AP reports:
Walpin was criticized by the acting U.S. attorney in Sacramento for the way he handled an investigation of Johnson and St. HOPE Academy, a nonprofit group that received hundreds of thousands of dollars in federal grants from the Corporation for National Community Service. The corporation runs the AmeriCorps program.
“It is vital that I have the fullest confidence in the appointees serving as Inspectors General,” Obama said in a letter Thursday to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Joe Biden, who also serves as president of the Senate. “That is no longer the case with regard to this Inspector General.”
The president didn’t offer any more explanation, but White House Counsel Gregory Craig, in a letter to Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, cited the U.S. attorney’s criticism of Walpin to an integrity committee for inspectors general.
“We are aware of the circumstances leading to that referral and of Mr. Walpin’s conduct throughout his tenure and can assure you that the president’s decision was carefully considered,” Craig wrote.
Grassley had written Obama a letter pointing to a law requiring that Congress be given the reasons an IG is fired. He cited a Senate report saying the requirement is designed to ensure that inspectors general are not removed for political reasons.
Grassley said Walpin had identified millions of dollars in AmeriCorps funds that were wasted or misspent and “it appears he has been doing a good job.”
Messages left for Walpin seeking comment were not immediately returned.
The IG found that Johnson, a former all-star point guard for the Phoenix Suns, had used AmeriCorps grants to pay volunteers to engage in school-board political activities, run personal errands for Johnson and even wash his car.
Even more intriguging is the fact that there could be a Michelle Obama connection to all this.
Didn’t the Obamessiah repeatedly pledge last year to “end business as usual” in Washington, DC? Who’da thought this was the way he planned to do it?