When President Barack Obama pledged unprecedented openness in government on his second day in office, his Justice Department dispatched a missive laying down the new rules for all federal agencies.
The Freedom of Information Act, the primary law guaranteeing the public access to government information, "should be administered with a clear presumption: in the face of doubt, openness prevails," the decree declared in January 2009.
Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night could stop these postal employees from stealing checks.
The former supervisor at an Atlanta mail distribution facility, a coworker and four others pled guilty this month to stealing $3 million in U.S. Treasury checks, including veterans benefits, tax refunds and Social Security checks. By the time authorities figured out the scheme, the small theft ring had stolen or cashed 1,300 federal checks, officials said.
Beneath the expressions of grief, sorrow and disbelief over the Connecticut school massacre lies an uneasy truth in Washington: over the last few years the Obama administration and Congress quietly let federal funding for several key school security programs lapse in the name of budget savings.
The top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee is investigating whether an undercover FBI agent may have used $14,500 to reward people he was investigating by hiring prostitutes.
Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, is demanding answers after a motion surfaced in a federal court case in California alleging the undercover agent took suspects repeatedly to brothels in the Philippines and then sought $14,500 in reimbursment for "rewards." Adding to the concern is some of the brothels are believed to have used minors for sex.
Nearly 11 years after the September 11 attacks, the Justice Department still can't account for how many terrorism cases or convictions it has achieved.
The agency's internal watchdog on Thursday faulted the department for failing to maintain paperwork to back up the statistics it has used in public to grade its work and plan for the future. And it turns out, the department has understated the actual number of terror cases brought in court, the inspector general reported.