Empower Oversight Wins Appeal, Obtains Documents on Housing Finance Agency Office of Inspector General

 

Empower Oversight, a nonprofit and nonpartisan organization with the goal of enhancing oversight of government, won an appeal for six Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, allowing the group to access documents previously undisclosed.

The organization sought documents related to multiple reports of misconduct in the Federal Housing Finance Agency Office of Inspector General (FHFA-OIG).

“These new documents raise important questions about why it looks like the folks who were supposed to be watching the watchdogs failed to report their findings of whistleblower retaliation at the FHFA OIG to the Trump White House. Based on the record so far, there is no legitimate explanation for CIGIE’s Integrity Committee sitting on its findings until three months into the Biden administration. The public has a right to know whether politics improperly infected the Integrity Committee process and Empower Oversight will keep fighting for access to documents to shed more sunlight on how that process was allowed to fail whistleblowers for so long,” said Empower Oversight President Jason Foster.

After a lengthy investigation, FHFA-OIG’s oversight department issued a report, justifying Inspector General Laura Wertheimer’s termination. According to Empower Oversight, the report had been withheld from the White House during the final 15 months of the Trump administration.

When presented with the report that detailed misconduct, President Joe Biden did not take action. Instead, Wertheimer resigned from her position due to bipartisan backlash.

The organization detailed that “two other officials the report found to have engaged in misconduct remain in place: Chief Counsel Leonard DePasquale, and former Acting Deputy Inspector General for Investigations Richard Parker.”

In fact, Wertheimer’s husband, Andrew Pincus, was a strong ally of President Biden during the 2020 election. According to records from the Federal Election Commission, Pincus donated thousands to Biden’s campaign.

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Cooper Moran is a reporter for The Star News Network. Follow Cooper on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Court Gavel” by wp paarz. CC BY-SA 2.0.

 

 

 

 

 

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