Investigation called for by CREW

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Personal emails used by White House staff to connect with lobbyists? Not in the Obama adminstration which was going to bring transparency and change.

On Monday good-government group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) asked a House committee to look into whether the Obama White House violated federal laws regarding electronic records by using private email accounts to communicate with lobbyists and meeting with lobbyists outside the White House.

CREW wrote a letter to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform asking it to investigate and hold hearings to determine any violations of the Presidential Records Act (PRA) and Federal Records Act (FRA).

The group’s letter is in response to an article in The New York Times on June 25 that said Obama White House officials have met “hundreds of times” over the last 18 months with prominent Washington lobbyists.

“But because the discussions are not taking place at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, they are not subject to disclosure on the visitors’ log that the White House releases as part of its pledge to be the “most transparent presidential administration in history,” the New York Times reported.

The Times also reported that lobbyists said they “routinely” get emails from White House staff members’ personal accounts, not their White House emails which are subject to public records review.

So can we all say hypocrite?

As a candidate and as president, Obama has been sharply critical of lobbyists and their influence in the political process. He pledged to institute greater transparency and to close the revolving lobby door in Washington. (Source: ABC News)

Looks like same old Washington politics with some Chicago influence sprinkled in.

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