Friday, November 18, 2011

Most Ethical Administration Ever

We can add yet another of President Obama's cabinet appointees to the list of those associated with possible scandal. First it was Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner (Tax Cheating), then came Attorney General Eric Holder (Fast and Furious, inter alia), followed by Energy Secretary Steven Chu (Solyndra), now it's Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius implicated in a scandal being dubbed "Shreddergate."

Kathleen Sebelius is the former governor of Kansas whom President Obama named as his Secretary of HHS. When you read this column by Jack Cashill you might wonder why she isn't in jail. If she were a Republican she doubtless would be.

You should read the whole of Cashill's report, but the quick summation is that as governor of Kansas Sebelius was implicated in an attempt to cover-up wrong-doing in her administration related to a criminal investigation of local Planned Parenthood personnel:
In 2002 Republican Phill Kline was elected attorney general of Kansas, and Democrat Kathleen Sebelius was elected governor. They had different agendas.

Kline wanted to know how Kansas, despite tough laws he had helped write as a legislator, had emerged as the world capital of late-term abortions. Sebelius did not want to know or want anyone else to know, either.

Kline quickly discovered that abortions performed on under-aged girls were not being reported to the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services, or SRS, as mandated by law.

The purpose of the mandatory reporting laws is to remove a child from a situation in which the abuse is likely to happen again.

To track the reporting failure, Kline needed the abortion records kept by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, or KDHE, which, like the SRS, was now being run by Sebelius appointees. Although these records are kept for law-enforcement purposes, both agencies resisted in every which way they could.

It took Kline years of legal haggling to get the records. They showed that in the years 2002 and 2003, 166 girls under 15 had abortions at Kansas clinics, the great majority of them at George Tiller's clinic in Wichita or Planned Parenthood's in suburban Kansas City. Only two of them were reported to SRS, and both of those stories were already in the news.

Unable to stop Kline legally, Sebelius persuaded a popular Republican district attorney to switch parties to run against Kline in 2006. Through various cut-outs, Tiller invested nearly $2 million in the anti-Kline effort. And the Star won Planned Parenthood's top editorial honor for its virulent campaign against "Snoop Dog" Kline. Kline lost.

In a wonderful twist, Republican precinct captains elected Kline to take the DA spot vacated by Sebelius' new attorney general. Planned Parenthood just happened to be in that county. In October 2007, Kline charged Planned Parenthood with committing 107 criminal acts, including 23 felonies for manufacturing documents – the first criminal charges ever brought against Planned Parenthood anywhere.

Although the usual suspects saw to Kline's re-election defeat in 2008, new Johnson County DA Steve Howe continued the case Kline had launched. Last week, however, Howe had to ask that the felony charges be dropped. As he had just learned, the evidence had been destroyed.

As the Star reported on Thursday, "All copies of key documents needed to support those charges no longer exist." Sebelius's hand-picked attorney general, Steve Six, destroyed the certified copies in 2009, and the Sebelius-run KDHE destroyed the original records in 2005.
There's much more on Shreddergate at the link.

Mr. Obama promised us the most ethical, the most transparent administration in history. What he's delivered is certainly something less than that.

Thanks to Byron for passing the story along.