Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Who railroaded the Amtrak inspector general?

Story from Michelle Malkin about the Amtrak inspector general Fred Weiderhold who "retired" last month.

From the article:

On June 18, Weiderhold met with Amtrak officials to discuss the results of an independent report by the Washington, D.C. law firm, Willkie, Farr & Gallagher. The 94-page report has been made publicly available through the office of whistleblower advocate Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa). It concluded that the "independence and effectiveness" of the Amtrak inspector general's office "are being substantially impaired" by the agency's Law Department. Amtrak bosses have effectively gagged their budgetary watchdogs from communicating with Congress without preapproval; required that all Amtrak documents be "pre-screened" (and in some cases redacted) before being turned over to the inspector general's office; and taken control over the IG's $5 million portion of federal stimulus dollars.

Malkins alleges cronyism in the firing as a Eleanor Acheson oversees the Amtrak Law Department and Acheson is a good friend of Hillary Clinton and VP Joe Biden and they're looking to protect their people in Amtrak. Is it true? Probably, but whatever. Executives get sacked all the time and I refuse to cry my eyes out for some dude who was making huge money and now gets a sweet severance deal while millions are out of a job.  If Obama's people want to get some of their own folks in Amtrak so be it, that's the way politics goes when your administration injects $1 billion plus of tax payer money into a company. But I expect solid oversight to prevent waste and for Amtrak to deliver some noticeable upgrades by the 2012 election cycle now that they got major fed dollars. America needs to see results with improved Amtrak rail service along the NEC and across the US, I don't care who's in there as long as it gets done.


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