Monday, March 26, 2007

GSA Administrator Doan to testify before the Waxman committee

GSA Chief Is Accused of Playing Politics

Witnesses have told congressional investigators that the chief of the General Services Administration and a deputy in Karl Rove's political affairs office at the White House joined in a videoconference earlier this year with top GSA political appointees, who discussed ways to help Republican candidates.

With GSA Administrator Lurita Alexis Doan and up to 40 regional administrators on hand, J. Scott Jennings, the White House's deputy director of political affairs, gave a PowerPoint presentation on Jan. 26 of polling data about the 2006 elections. ...
I can think of no reason for such a presentation to the Government Services Administration.
..On Wednesday, Doan is scheduled to appear before Waxman's committee to answer questions about the videoconference and other issues. The committee is investigating whether remarks made during the videoconference violated the Hatch Act, a federal law that restricts executive-branch employees from using their positions for political purposes. Those found in violation of the act do not face criminal penalties but can be removed from their jobs. ...
This blog intends to cover this hearing.
... Doan, a wealthy former government contractor who sold her company before taking over the GSA last May, has hired three law firms and two media relations companies at her own expense to handle inquiries from the federal investigators and the news media. ...
I knew Waxman was going to make Crisis Communications a growth industry.
Doan Denies 'Improper' Use of Agency for GOP

Waxman's investigation began in response to a Jan. 19 story in The Washington Post about a no-bid job Doan tried to give to firms run by Edie Fraser, a veteran Washington public relations executive who had served as a paid consultant to Doan. Waxman's investigators concluded that the two women had "a long-standing business relationship" that was not "previously disclosed," according to Waxman's letter.

Between 2003 and 2005, Fraser billed Doan as much as $20,000 a month in consulting fees to "generally promote attributes" of Doan and her company, New Technology Management Inc., according to invoices obtained by The Post. In all, Doan paid at least $417,500 to companies affiliated with Fraser before Doan took over the GSA, according to Waxman's investigators.

Last year, Fraser helped prepare Doan for her GSA confirmation and lined up political support for her, according to interviews and e-mails obtained by The Post.
I wonder who is going to prepare Fraser for her appearance before the Waxman committee. Crisis Communications is going to make a lot of money out of this Congress; but our industry is going to look bad, really bad.


Len said...

Why is it that none of the country's major newspapers covered Doan's appearance before Congress on 3/29??

I watched it on CSPAN and she bombed!!!!!!!

Alice said...

Do a search on Lurita Doan and Waxman on Google News and you will find plenty of articles, including the Washington Post. Federal Computer Week also has good coverage.

Yeah, she certainly bombed.