Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Gerald Walpin Cleared: IG Walpin Cleared Wants Job Back: AmeriCorps Investigator Cleared

Inspector General (IG) Gerald Walpin has been cleared of any reason for termination by the Obama White House. He wants his job back. Important update just hours after posting this news. See below.

This report confirms that Walpin has been cleared of acting U.S. Attorney Larry Brown's claims that he overstepped his authority in an investigation of  Sacramento, California mayor, Kevin Johnson.

IG Walpin did his job and investigated Americorp and Sacramento, California Mayor, Kevin Johnson, and the report wasn't pretty. The White House couldn't handle that, so they fired him on June 11, 2009.

The investigation involved $75 million in misused funds at AmeriCorps and a scandal involving NBA basketball star, Kevin Johnson.

Walpin has since sued his previous employer, the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) - but the White House did the firing. Walpin's case is still making its way through the courts.

This is a very complicated case, and a very important one. Congress mandated the methods by which a White House can terminate an Inspector General - and keep in mind that Inspector Generals do not work for the White House. Nevertheless, the White House fired Gerald Walpin but did not follow the congressional mandates of how such a firing must be done. In fact, the White House literally blew-off objections by Senator Charles Grassley, simply saying that President Obama no longer had "confidence" in Walpin.

Today, the Sacramento Bee reports that Gerald Walpin has been cleared of the complaint leveled by an acting U.S. Attorney, Lawrence G. Brown. Brown is no longer an "acting" U.S. Attorney. The office declined to comment.

I have a lot of reporting on Gerald Walpin and what happened to him. It includes the full AmeriCorp investigation and the part Kevin Johnson may have played in Obama's decision to "relieve" Walpin of his position of Inspector General.

By the way...the White House Chief Counsel, Greg Craig - the man who called Walpin and gave him one hour to resign, is leaving the White House and guess who is rumored to perhaps take his place? Robert "Bob" Bauer - the husband of Anita Dunn. Anita Dunn made the news recently by suggesting that the White House does not consider FOX News a news source. Soon after, a video emerged with Dunn saying that Mao Tse Tung was one of two philosophers" that she often turns to (the second is Mother Teresa).

So Walpin has been cleared, as many of us suspected he would be. He wants his job back. The next step should be that Walpin continues to keep a sharp eye on AmeriCorp for us. Many thanks to reader SacTownSue for the heads up on this news out of her local paper.

Update 11-10-09:
According to Politico, the White House is not buying the findings of the committee investigating Gerald Walpin. The unnamed White House source said "...we continue to believe it [Walpin's firing] was fully merited."

From Grassley: (read the entire article here)
After getting both points of view, including Mr. Walpin’s, the integrity committee found that the acting U.S. attorney’s complaint had no merit and that there was no need for a full investigation," Grassley said in a statement e-mailed to POLITICO. "Since the White House cited the complaint in its case for firing Mr. Walpin, it’s disturbing that the White House failed to wait for the outcome of the review before firing the inspector general. The process set up for situations like this allows both sides of the story to be heard, and it should have been given a chance to work.”
This is one more example of Obama overstepping Congress.

*****

As I further investigate this latest development in Mr. Walpin's favor, here is in-depth information as background:

Who is Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson - Walpin-Johnson Investigation

Schwarzenegger Involvement: Kevin Johnson Investigation by Gerald Walpin

U.S. Attorney Larry Brown and CnCS Displeasure with Walpin's Investigation

Gerald Walpin Firing Update: AmeriCorp $75 Million Misused: Michelle Obama Hires?

Glen Beck - Gerald Walpin Video: IG Gerals Walping on Glen Beck 

Kevin Johnson - St. Hope Scandal: Rick Maya Resigns, Gerald Walpin Investigates

White House Charges Walpin Confused, Disoriented, Disruptive

Gerald Walpin Fired by President Obama: Inspector general Walpin Fired

©2007-2012copyrightMaggie M. Thornton