President Barack Obama fired the Inspector General for Americorps, Gerald Walpin, who was investigating Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson’s community service organization, St. HOPE Academy. Questions are being raised about this firing.
Kevin Johnson, according to Hot Air, was accused of, “…defrauding the government over more than $400,000 in community service grants. Johnson, an Obama supporter, got a deal from the White House that allowed him to manage federal funds again and avoid paying back at least half of the grant money he used illegally. The White House cut Walpin out of those negotiations, and Walpin went to Congress about it.”
Obama seems to have violated a law he cosponsored that requires that the President give a thirty day advance notice for terminating such officials in order to shield them from politically motivated firings. Instead the Obama administration attempted to bully Gerald Walpin into resigning and, when he refused, firing him, accusing him of mental incompetence.
The firing instead appears to many observers to be politically motivated. Kevin Johnson was a campaign contributor to and supporter of Barack Obama. The firing has all the stench of a political quid pro quo, along with a bare knuckle, Chicago style tactic of smearing the target of the firing.
Senator Claire McCaskill, a Democrat, and Senator Charles Grassley, a Republican, have demanded documentation and explanation of the firing. The Obama administration is persisting in their claim of mental incompetence on behalf of Gerald Walpin. This claim is at variance with Gerald Walpin’s numerous appearances in the media, where he has appeared erudite and intelligent in defense of his investigation and personal honor.
Why is the Obama administration engaging in this kind of behavior? The short explanation, which covers a lot of the evil people do, is because they wanted to and because they could. The Obama administration wanted to get rid of a Bush appointed Inspector General who was being a bother to one of its supporters. The Obama administration thinks it can do this because President Obama is at 60 percent approval in the polls and the mainstream media is hardly inclined to be too aggressive in covering it. Also, Congress is controlled by the Democrats are is thus not disposed to be too enthusiastic about investigating a President of its own party.
The problem is that being able to skate on one illegal act will inevitably lead to other, more brazen illegal acts. At some point, a critical mass is achieved and an administration engaged in such behavior is consumed by the backlash. One does not have to ask the ghost of Richard Nixon what can happen then. Bill Clinton survived his various scandals, but they nevertheless consumed the last quarter of his Presidency. A President like Obama who is so anxious to remake the world can ill afford to instead spend all of his time staying out of jail.
Source: Obama playing hardball on Walpin as key Dem calls foul, Ed Morrissey, Hot Air, June 17th, 2009