Unlike the White House, Walpin hasn't changed his story one time. After getting pressed by congressional investigators to explain the termination, at one point, the White House said Walpin appeared "confused and disoriented" at a May 20th Board Meeting for Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), which is the parent company of AmeriCorps.
Ever since being asked to respond, in writing, by Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley to 12 specific questions about Walpin's firing, the White House appears to have chosen the somewhat interesting strategy known as stonewalling.
Possibly playing a significant role in the White House's decision to zip its lips may be those twelve questions (which went unanswered). Here are the questions Grassley issued to White House counsel Gregory Craig back on June 17th he wanted answered by June 24th:
1) Did the [Corporation for National and Community Service] Board communicate its concerns about Mr. Walpin to the White House in writing?
2) Specifically, which CNCS Board members came forward with concerns about Mr. Walpin’s ability to serve as the Inspector General?
3) Was the communication about the Board’s concerns on or about May 20, 2009 the first instance of any communications with White House personnel regarding the possibility of removing Mr. Walpin?
4) Which witnesses were interviewed in the course of Mr. Eisen’s review?
5) How many witnesses were interviewed?
6) Were any employees of the Office of Inspector General, who may have had more frequent contact with Mr. Walpin than the Board members, interviewed?
7) Was Mr. Walpin asked directly during Mr. Eisen’s review about the events of May 20, 2009?
8) Was Mr. Walpin asked for his response to the allegations submitted to the Integrity Committee by Acting U.S. Attorney Lawrence Brown?
9) What efforts were made during Mr. Eisen’s review to obtain both sides of the story or to afford the Office of Inspector General an opportunity to be heard?
10) In addition to the claim that Mr. Walpin was “confused” and “disoriented,” the letter also says he exhibited “other behavior” that led to questions about his capacity. What other behavior was Mr. Eisen referencing?
11) If the initial and primary concern had to do with Mr. Walpin’s capacity to serve for potential health reasons, why was he only given one hour to decide whether to resign or be fired?
12) If Mr. Walpin’s telecommuting arrangements since the beginning of this year were a major concern, then why was Mr. Walpin not simply asked to stop telecommuting?
Grassley wanted answers in writing by June 24th. He's still waiting. Here's York's piece from the 17th.
That leads us to the name Frank Trinity, a top official with CNCS who after meeting with congressional investigators, has decided to do a good impression of a mime that wants to be left alone.
Byron York, who has been following this particular IG story since the beginning has the full story
Now, more on that part about those behind Walpin's firing changing their stories while Walpin has been thoroughly consistent with his. Since the "confused and disoriented" defense hasn't served Obama well, it appears that the race card may now be getting played. Historically speaking, it's often a last line of defense.
(The reason for Walpin's firing) is particularly important to investigators, who believe the Obama administration may be constructing an after-the-fact rationale for canning Walpin.
What on earth for? Obama's people say Walpin appeared to be a few cards short of a full deck at a meeting. Doesn't that sufficiently cover it?
Who's appearing confused and disoriented now? Well, apparently the White House is because its story is not matching the story of Frank Trinity.
Now, the story has shifted again, to emphasize allegations of racial and gender insensitivity in a parody newsletter produced to mark the retirement of a worker in Walpin's office in May 2008.
When backed into a corner, scream 'RACISM', right?
Here's a link to the newsletter.
Truly problematic here is that Walpin DIDN'T WRITE ANYTHING IN THAT NEWSLETTER and its contents are actually rather innocuous to boot (see York's piece for quotes)!
If the White House's latest reason for firing Walpin is that he is guilty of vicariously exhibiting racism through the writer of a hokie (is 'hokie' racist?) newsletter, Obama should be starting to feel some significant heat.
Did I mention he's at -8 on the Presidential Approval Index?
h/t to PowerLine for posting the story