FNC: Fmr Inspector General Charges 'Mudslinging' by Obama Admin
On Wednesday, several FNC shows recounted the latest developments in the case of President Obama's suspicious, and possibly illegal, firing of former inspector general Gerald Walpin, after an investigation headed by Walpin found Obama friend and Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson guilty of misusing over $800,000 in funding intended for the AmeriCorps program. Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity pointed to apparent inconsistencies in the story so far.
Beck, who had previously interviewed Walpin on Monday, interviewed him again on Wednesday, and informed viewers of a claim by the White House that Walpin had shown up at a meeting "disoriented," leading the President to dismiss him. Walpin charged that the administration was engaging in "an amazing slinging of mud" against him, and later added:
Frankly, what they're saying, anybody who knows me, and everybody who knows me, and those people who have heard me on television, and those people who have heard me on radio, know this is the most incredible smear that has ever occurred to someone only because he is standing up to the most powerful machine on Earth.
Beck contended that Walpin had been begged by the administration to give a speech even after the meeting in which he was allegedly "disoriented":
GLENN BECK: Didn't they ask you two days before they fired you to go to, in fact, didn't ask you, begged you to go to San Francisco to give a speech, right?
GERALD WALPIN: That's correct, to about 2,000 of their staff and grantees.
The FNC host ended up defending Walpin's honor and called for more outrage and mainstream media coverage of the story:
Why the hell are we not out in the streets? Why are you not pounding the pavement right now? Why are you not calling the White House and saying, "This is an outrage." Why aren't you calling ABC, NBC, CBS and saying, "Why aren't you covering this? Why aren't you doing it? You covered it all when George Bush was firing attorneys, something he had a right to do."
On his show Hannity, FNC host Sean Hannity pointed out that, after initially questioning the White House's firing of Walpin, Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill had backtracked, accepting the White House explanation, even though President Obama's action still seems legally inconsistent with the requirement that 30 days notice must be given to Congress before an inspector general can be removed.
Now, according to a law that was co-sponsored by the then-Senator Obama, the President is required to give the Congress 30 days notice when he seeks to remove an inspector general. So what part of 30 days does he not understand? By the way, it was his law.
Below are transcripts of relevant portions of the FNC shows Hannity; Special Report with Bret Baier; and Beck from Wednesday, June 17:
#From the Wednesday, June 17, Hannity:
SEAN HANNITY: And tonight in "Hannity's America," President Obama's suspicious firing of Inspector General Gerald Walpin is sparking outrage, even in his own party. Democratic Senator and staunch Obama ally, Claire McCaskill, said yesterday, quote, "The White House has failed to follow the proper procedure in notifying Congress as to the removal of the inspector general. Loss of confidence is not a sufficient reason."
Now, according to a law that was co-sponsored by the then-Senator Obama, the President is required to give the Congress 30 days notice when he seeks to remove an inspector general. So what part of 30 days does he not understand? By the way, it was his law. And by the way, we also have late-breaking news from Senator McCaskill's office. She received a letter from the White House outlining the reasons for Mr. Walpin's firing, and she is now satisfied that the White House is following the law. Wait. 30 days didn't pass. But we are glad there are two offices were able to clear this up.
#From the Wednesday, June 17, Special Report with Bret Baier:
BRET BAIER: The President removed a government agency's internal watchdog last week and plans to fire him, in part because he was "confused and disoriented." But as correspondent Shannon Bream reports, the man in question says that's just not the case.
SHANNON BREAM: The White House says Gerald Walpin was no longer up to the job of inspector general of AmeriCorps, but he believes doing his job is what got him into trouble in the first place.
GERALD WALPIN, FORMER INSPECTOR GENERAL: They didn't like the fact that I was independently criticizing them.
BREAM: In 2008, Walpin led an investigation into whether an academy founded by former NBA player and Obama supporter Kevin Johnson, who's now the mayor of Sacramento, had misused taxpayer money. Walpin said Johnson mishandled roughly $850,000 in AmeriCorps funding and the academy did agree to repay half of its AmeriCorps grants. While Walpin may see a connection there, in a letter issued Tuesday, the White House outlined a completely different set of reasons for removing him. "Mr. Walpin was confused, disoriented, unable to answer questions and exhibited other behavior that led the board to question his capacity to serve."
WALPIN: That's really going to the bottom of the barrel scraping the bottom of the barrel for mud.
BREAM: When pressed on the matter today, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs didn't back down.
ROBERT GIBBS: These were views that were held by many people as part of that board, and certainly the administration stands behind what's in the letter.
BREAM: The Senator who authored the law that mandates the President give Congress 30 days notice before dismissing an inspector general, along with an explanation of cause, Democrat Claire McCaskill said yesterday, "The White House has failed to follow the proper procedure." But, following the White House letter outlining its reasons for dismissing Walpin, McCaskill today issued this statement: "The decision appears well founded." Per the statutory language, Congress will now have 30 days to investigate the Walpin matter. In Washington, Shannon Bream, Fox News.
#From the Wednesday, June 17, Beck:
GLENN BECK: An update for the story that we brought you earlier this week, Barack Obama fired Gerald Walpin. He is the inspector general of the Corporation for National and Community Service. That is the federal agency responsible for distributing money to organizations like AmeriCorps, and places like ACORN. But Walpin was investigating the misuse of federal funds by Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, former NBA star and Obama friend and supporter. Well, what happened? You're supposed to fire an inspector general with a 30-day notification. It's required by law, and you're supposed to say exactly what you're firing for. Well, responding to the critics, like me last night, the White House released a statement explaining that Walpin was "confused and disoriented." And they questioned his capacity to serve. With me now, fired inspector general, Gerald Walpin. He is speaking out about the letter from the White House for the first time. Gerald, how are you, sir?
GERALD WALPIN, FMR. INSPECTOR GENEARAL FOR CNCS: Fine. Good to see you again.After getting Walpin to perform a number of simple tasks to make a point that he's not out of touch with reality, Beck continued:
BECK: Good to see you. Gee, that's not too veiled of a message that you're maybe a little too old for the job, Gerald. You might be a little senile.
WALPIN: Well, I suggest to you that it's really unfortunate when the government suggests that somebody is too old for public service.
BECK: Well, I mean, only the people that are doing it are just the people that, for instance, Robert Byrd is 91, Senator Ted Kennedy is 77. How old are you?
WALPIN: I will be 78 in September.
BECK: Oh, so you're 77. You're the same age as Ted Kennedy. Speaker Pelosi is 69. Representative Dingell is 82. Senator Specter is 79. Charlie Rangel is older than you are.
WALPIN: A little bit.
BECK: John Murtha is 77 today. Today is his birthday. So, but you're too old. There is, there were a couple of things that he said, that the board saw you in a meeting, and you were disoriented and confused and all disheveled. Can you tell us about that?
WALPIN: Oh, I was at a meeting making a presentation, telling the board that they had the responsibility to act independently also to oversee what the corporation was doing and shouldn't just follow blindly whatever the corporation said it was doing, and they refused to listen to me. Then I went on to the two reports we had issued, at least I tried to go on to them. I did one of them, and they were constantly peppering me with questions. I think for them to say that I was disoriented is an amazing, amazing slinging of mud.
BECK: Well, here's the question that I have. If you were disoriented, how long ago was that?
WALPIN: That was May 20th, I think.
BECK: Okay, so it was back in May. Didn't they ask you two days before they fired you to go to, in fact, didn't ask you, begged you to go to San Francisco to give a speech, right?
WALPIN: That's correct, to about 2,000 of their staff and grantees. This is crazy to suggest that I am not able to speak for myself, I'm disoriented. I'll leave it to the American public and your listeners, for example who watch me speak here, the reporters who have interviewed me. I don't think there is a single one that suggested that is correct.
BECK: I am, I am truly sorry that a man has gone through what you've gone through your whole life being a good citizen, just doing your thing, volunteer to serve your country, you're at, the age that you're at, and now, this country, this President is trying to throw you under the bus and make you, put you in a position to where you have to defend your sanity.
WALPIN: Well, if I didn't defend against these attacks, I don't think I could live with myself. I don't think I could look myself in the mirror.
BECK: How's your wife?
WALPIN: I did what was correct.
BECK: How's your wife?
WALPIN: My wife is very supportive. She thought I was very correct in not resigning.
BECK: My wife would be so unbelievably angry. She would be beside herself right now. She would also say, "Go get 'em!" But she would be, she'd be more offended at this than I am.
WALPIN: I think my wife is angry, too, but she controls her anger. And I have three wonderful children. They're very supportive. I will continue to do what is right. I don't know where it will lead, but I'm not going to swallow my principles and drown them out.
BECK: Gresh, can we, can we bump the hot list today? I like to bump, we're going to have to take a break and then we'll come back, because I want to talk to you a little bit more about the charges. And then, we found the test, the government test that, you know, for, if anybody is confused and disoriented, it is the mini mental states examination. This is the, this is the test that if grandpa just is taking the tractor out and going through the wall of Denny's, which my grandfather did, you take them to the hospital and they give them this test. And we'll see if the inspector general has lost his marbles next.
BECK: We're going to bypass our hot list here for just a second, because I want to get back to fired inspector general, Gerald Walpin. This is the guy who the Obama administration is now trying to smear and say that he is senile. I guess that's it. And you were working from home, which they found outrageous, but they knew about that.
WALPIN: Yes, the corporation knew about it and it approved. And even though they didn't, I didn't have to tell them because I have an independent agency. And the federal government's policy says, "We're in favor of your working from home if that helps you with your family."
BECK: Okay. No offense, because I think you're totally there, but that's the charge, that you were disoriented. You were confused. You can't really do your job anymore.
WALPIN: But this is idiotic. First of all, they are talking about one meeting out of hundreds I have had with them. They'd better know they're wrong on that one.
BECK: So you had this meeting in May, and then they asked you to go give a 20-minute speech?
BECK: You got more time than the head of the corporation, right?
WALPIN: Yes, that's correct. That is what I was told.
BECK: So why would they do that if you were confused?
WALPIN: It's idiotic.
BECK: Okay, so they're trying to besmirch this man. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to give you the test. This is the state examination if grandpa comes in and says like, "Oh, I'm drooling. Peanuts - where did I lose my shoes?" That's when you go to the hospital and they give grandpa to the hospital and they give grandpa this test. So let's do it. I'm going to do it exactly like they would do it in the hospital. Ready? What is the year?
BECK: People who buy on the whole picture drawing thing is crazy. It's nuts. Grandpa looks like he's going to be okay, boys and girls. It looks like grandpa can drive the car. It's that going to be. Oh, and he got it right!
Obama, looks like he's not senile. This is, to me, sir - I met you for just a short period of time the other day. We talked. You recalled details - when I asked you when you were here two days ago, three days ago, I said, "How long have you been in the service of your country?" You were giving me details of it. You didn't just come out with a number. It's ridiculous.
WALPIN: Glenn, I know why you went through this test. Frankly, what they're saying, anybody who knows me, and everybody who knows me, and those people who have heard me on television, and those people who have heard me on radio, know this is the most incredible smear that has ever occurred to someone only because he is standing up to the most powerful machine on Earth.
BECK: Do you think you're going to win?
WALPIN: Do I think I'm going to win? Probably not. I don't. But I do think I will win my own continued self-respect and the respect of others who know me because I'm not willing to give in on this principle. I did my job, my staff did its job the way we were supposed to do it, and I was fired for that.
BECK: What do you think is coming?
WALPIN: I don't know. Probably some more smears.
BECK: Sir, thank you for your service.
WALPIN: Thank you.
BECK: I appreciate it. Thank you. You bet. We'll be back in just a second.
BECK: You know what? I want to talk to you - before we move on, I want to talk to you about Gerald Walpin. He's the guy that was just here.
America, this - it was like talking to my grandfather or my dad. When he was sitting here on the set, all I could think of is, A, his wife. What is his wife feeling like?
Here is a guy, imagine this is your father or your grandfather, Okay? He has worked hard his whole life. He has made mistakes. He has done this. He's done that. But he has been a private citizen his whole life.
The President, the last one calls him and says, "Sir, will you serve your country?" He's 75 years old. He doesn't need this crap. And he goes to Washington, and he finds he is protecting you and your dollars. Finally, somebody with some honor, somebody who's doing the right thing, somebody who's just trying to make sure that there is a shred of decency left in Washington.
And he goes and goes after the left and he goes after the right. He has put people through the wringer on the left and the right. His job is to be an independent guy and just make sure nobody is wasting your dollars.
So a new guy comes into office. His good friend is being hassled by this guy. He's already proven that the new guy's friend is dirty and corrupt. He says that guy shouldn't get any more money, he shouldn't get any more taxpayer dollars, it's insane. He has just wasted almost a million dollars and spent it on things like getting his car washed. He shouldn't get another dime of taxpayer dollars.
What happens? The new powerful friend, Barack Obama, fires him, and says, "I want your resignation." He breaks the law that he, as a senator, cosponsored. And then, when he demands an answer, "Why are you firing me?" what happens?
Your father or your grandfather, the guy who doesn't need this, just trying to be an honorable guy, is smeared by the most powerful man on the planet. And this man tells everybody, "Your dad is crazy. He is senile. He was at a meeting and he wasn't making sense. He was disoriented."
Did he seem like he is disoriented? Did he seem senile to you? Boy, I tell you, Kevin Johnson, the guy who was taking all the money, $800,000 and blowing it on car washes and whatever the hell else he wanted to spend it on, he didn't think he was senile. He seemed to have his case there and his facts there.
Why should this matter to you? For two reasons. One, there is nobody watching the store. There is nobody watching the store. They are, one by one, taking people out that are doing your job that we're all screaming for.
The other reason is there any decency in this country anymore? Is there a shred of decency? Is there anybody? Why the hell are we not out in the streets? Why are you not pounding the pavement right now? Why are you not calling the White House and saying, "This is an outrage."
Why aren't you calling ABC, NBC, CBS and saying, "Why aren't you covering this? Why aren't you doing it? You covered it all when George Bush was firing attorneys, something he had a right to do." But grandpa, or your dad is dishonored.
When we were in the break, he just said - I said, "What's next for you?" He said, "I guess I just want some peace and quiet." I have so much respect for this man because he wouldn't sit in the last row of seats. He wouldn't get up from the counter. What the hell is our excuse?