Rep. Issa on GSA, Secret Service scandals
House lawmakers set for wave of hearings
- Duration 5:17
- Date Apr 16, 2012
House lawmakers set for wave of hearings
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Meantime a house panel is set to grill top executives from GSA.
Later today and this is going to be -- as well folks the agency is under a lot of fire right now for spending close to a million dollars of your tax money.
On a lavish Vegas conference.
And now -- the concern really that that may be just the tip of the -- berg.
On this story and perhaps other agencies as well my next guest is heading that investigation.
Shall I say is the chairman of the house oversight committee congressman -- on good morning good to have you here today.
Good Morning America and thanks for for talking about in terms of the tip of the iceberg.
If -- were just a couple of 100000 of any excess funds spent on a conference that already cost several 100000 dollars.
It probably wouldn't be the story that it is but it really is the tip of the iceberg.
This and things like ribbon cuttings that that went on for five days of Hawaii vacations.
Misuse of TSA credit cards that we're seeing a pattern of the GSA and remember the GSA sets the standard.
Four if you will getting a good value for the American people.
For all of government -- that that is the GSA's mandate basically to watch out funds are spent in government the irony is not lost on anybody in that title.
So as you sit down to today and I it's already being reported that mr.
Neely who oversaw the Vegas conference part of all of this.
Is most likely gonna take the best.
Do you think you're gonna get any valuable information out of mr.
-- today at what will you be asking him.
We're gonna ask him a lot of questions surrounding just three weeks ago when he did a transcribed interview.
It's one of the reasons that we're still calling them is that it seems pretty odd that he would talk to the inspector general just a few weeks ago on the record.
And and now has said that he -- is -- lawyers that he may take the fifth.
We're not interested in anything in his personal life were in erected in the culture at the TSA and how we change it.
And although he may soon be leaving the -- we hope.
We want to know when he's out the door how we're going to change behavior throughout the government service.
And remember this is an individual who still being paid today by the American people he hasn't been fired.
-- their criminal charges that perhaps may come of bass you know basically if you charge the government.
An extraordinary amount of money for something that could have cost a lot last if you had done it at quickly is there criminal element to this.
You know sadly -- -- if you steal from the government it is a crime.
If you waste the government's money it is currently not a crime even though it seems like it to the taxpayers and it's one of the reasons that are oversight and the inspector general's oversight.
Have to be very diligent and never again can we have an interim report.
It showed such a widespread problem.
Wait eleven months before it becomes available to our committee or to the public.
-- seems to -- there's a fine line between overcharging.
And stealing it in some cases so will be curious to hear what comes out of that.
Inquiry discussion today I also want to get your thoughts on the Secret Service issue that bubbled up being in a very ugly way over the course of the weekend.
What are your biggest concerns there is your committee -- pursuing any hearings on that issue.
We're we're pursuing an investigation may or may not lead to hearings but.
What we are concerned about similar GSA is this obviously was not just 11120.
Individuals this in fact is a widespread problem.
And each of these individuals apparently compromised.
-- if you will their room.
Putting somebody in a room that that very much good compromise them now or in the future due to blackmail.
So we've got to find out how widespread it is and how you change that part of the culture.
At the Secret Service where they think they can have two roles one in which they're protecting high level high value individuals like the president in the cabinet.
And another one in which they say were off duty we can do whatever we want.
The two are not distinguishable when you look at foreign governments trying to infiltrate.
Are -- units protecting our most valuable targets.
The White House has responded to that they -- that that president has the security was never compromised.
At any time during this trip.
And they believe that there was not a security concern that was presented.
By this by this issue with prostitutes and perhaps.
-- -- you know the White House is mostly -- things this Secret Service is mostly saying we're handling it but let's understand.
I'm not concerned about this president in Colombia that's behind us.
I'm concerned about future president's cabinet officers other protected individuals.
510 years from now this culture if you will if it is widespread if there is this kind of a situation in which people are exposing themselves.
Two potential future blackmail.
Then in fact it'll be the next president of the president after they'll have somebody who's moved up the ranks who has this in their background.
So it's not the personal conduct it's not a one time event it's a question of whether or not the Secret Service has a plan to make sure they don't have anyone who's compromised.
Working for them in the future.
I'm so nice to thank you very much this will be at dug into great detail I have no doubt we'll look forward to the GSA hearings as well LB of ram -- -- thank you sir.
Thank you my.