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Accountability

Accountability

AIR: Nice Work If You Can Get It

"Contracting Rush for Security Led to Waste, Abuse." The headline of the Washington Post's lead story on May 22, 2005 was an eye-opener. Over the course of a 15-month investigation, veteran Post investigative reporters Scott Higham and Robert O'Harrow, Jr. had uncovered case after case of mismanagement and misuse of taxpayers' money by the U.S.

Money and Politics

The McConnell Machine

Kentucky Republican Senator Mitch McConnell is slated to become the Senate’s new Majority Leader if the Republicans maintain control of the Senate in the November 2006 election. His rise to power has long been linked to his prowess as a fundraiser. This investigation — run in four parts — offers an exclusive look by Herald-Leader

National Security

The Enemy Within

In "The Enemy Within," Frontline and The New York Times – in affiliation with the Center for Investigative Reporting – team up to investigate the nature of the terrorism threat against the United States five years after 9/11. After a multibillion dollar government reorganization and the transformation of domestic counterterrorism efforts, is the country better

Inside the Newsroom

Boyle denied, infuriating conservatives

Boyle’s nomination was again returned to the President because it did not receive unanimous consent to stay pending in the Senate over the long recess. President Bush will have to renominate Boyle, as he did on Sept. 5, to keep his confirmation chances alive.

The Senate Judiciary Committee today failed to vote on Boyle’s nomination, passing up its last chance to move him out of committee before the Senate adjourns for the November election. The lack of action on Boyle and other appellate nominees has infuriated conservatives. The next chance for Boyle would be during a “lame duck” session of Congress after the election.

Sep 29, 2006
Inside the Newsroom

Federal courts to use “conflict-checking” software

The Judicial Conference of the United States approved a new policy requiring “all federal courts to use conflict-checking computer software to identify cases in which judges may have a financial conflict of interest and should disqualify themselves.” This was prompted by “recent reports” that “several judges may have participated in matters in which they had a financial interest,” according to a memo sent to all federal judges in August.

Sep 19, 2006
Inside the Newsroom

Leahy and Kennedy condemn Boyle renomination

President Bush formally renominates Terrence Boyle to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, following through on his Aug. 30 announcement. Senators Leahy and Kennedy both issue statements condemning the renomination of Boyle, citing his conflicts of interest.

Sep 5, 2006
Inside the Newsroom

Senate Republicans push for Boyle

The Raleigh News & Observer reports that the next several weeks that the Senate is in session are critical for Boyle. Norman Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute said of Senate Republicans: “This may be their last bite at the apple for nominations like Boyle’s. But it sure seems to me this is not likely to go forward without a big controversy.” The paper’s Barbara Barrett also reports that, behind the scenes, Boyle’s former clerks have made more than 30 trips to Washington to push his nomination. One former clerk said, “I think we’re on the cusp of getting him a vote.” According to the paper, the White House wants to see Boyle confirmed immediately and “is expected to be bending ears in the Senate.” And Sen. Elizabeth Dole says she works on Boyle’s case “each and every day,” adding that she sees “growing and considerable support” among the Gang of 14 moderates. Dole said, “Certainly I would hope we would be able to get a vote in September.”

Sep 4, 2006
Inside the Newsroom

Specter speaks on Fox News about Boyle

On Fox News Sunday, Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter addressed the Boyle nomination: “Well, I think it does have big problems. When you have a judge who has ruled on cases where there was stock of his own involved, yeah. He has given an explanation, that they were minor, that they were oversights, but there are a number of them. But let’s consider that. Again, it’s a matter of an evaluation and a matter of judgment, but I think that Judge Boyle ought to have an up or down vote in the Senate. Chances are, candidly, Chris, he’ll be filibustered, but so far as I’m concerned, as chairman, I’m going to move them right along one at a time and let the full Senate make its judgment.”

Sep 3, 2006
Inside the Newsroom

Boyle acknowledges errors on financial disclosures

Judge Boyle acknowledged errors on two of his financial disclosure reports, for which his accountant takes the blame, according to public documents received by CIR. In a June 19th letter to the financial disclosure committee of the federal judiciary, Boyle wrote: “It has recently come to my attention that there was an incorrect inclusion of a reference to ‘Quintiles stock’ in my 2001 and 2002 financial disclosure reports.” Boyle presided over a case involving Quintiles in 2001 while reporting stock holdings in the company. But in defending himself against conflict of interest charges, he has denied owning Quintiles stock during that time, contradicting his own financial filings. In explaining the apparent errors, Boyle enclosed a May 30th letter from his accountant, Raymond W. Edwards of RSM McGladrey, Inc. Edwards wrote that despite not remembering or keeping complete notes of the exact situation, Boyle clearly “did not actually own those shares during either of those years.” Edwards attributes the mistake on the 2001 report to a “learning curve” and a confusing entry in a previous report. Edwards says his office reported Boyle’s sale of the stock on June 30, 2002 because by then the accountants had probably realized Boyle did not own the stock and therefore used an arbitrary date to wipe it from the records. Edwards concluded: “It is clear to me that the mistake on both reports was mine.” Multiple examples of Boyle’s conflicts of interest are shown here, with supporting documents here and here.

Aug 7, 2006
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