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This story the Environmental Protection Agency the EPA is under fire right now by a group of bipartisan senators.
Who are taking the agency to task for releasing personal information about 80000 farmers and ranchers information like.
Names and addresses and phone numbers.
Now the EPA admits it released this -- -- in response to a freedom of information request groups -- in environmental groups.
Those groups apparently -- no more information about farmers to take a closer look at water pollution.
As as it happened EPA admitted it was wrong but the plan to prevent it from happening it happening again is unclear enough senators want to know.
More about joining us now -- South Dakota senator John -- He's chairman the senate Republican conference and has been asking the EPA for answers.
Since April to senator soon.
In April we didn't have the IRS story about a government agency that was looking at a specific group and that's the big question here.
They -- what you know do you think this is a mistake an honest mistake made by an agency a mistake that they in next.
Or do you think that there's something more malicious going on.
The the way I look at this Jenin and in really that you didn't have the IRS we initially got this information as was back in April we got we got a tip that there were 80000 farm -- ranch families who had confidential information released these left when environmental groups.
By the EPA.
But what it appears is that these that the EPA is trying to.
Help these left wing groups help their friends attacked attacked in this case their enemies which are hardworking farm and ranch families.
In the information that they put out there was under it yet at the request it was a -- request but they put out more personal information and they've admitted now that they did the problem is information is already out there they asked these.
Organizations to give it back but by -- the damage is already -- why did you pattern.
It is a pattern and it -- I think -- serious credibility gap for this administration when they released this kind of information.
You know to these left going environmental groups.
So let's talk about the real life effects of this information being out as a South Dakota senator you have hundreds of farmers and ranchers to.
Had their information released what have you heard from that had they had.
He -- strangers showing up at their property had they been harassed in any way what's the real life affected.
This information being really well.
There -- extremely disturbed about it because these organizations like -- justice -- national resource defense council are constantly attacking.
-- ranching and farming and agricultural operations in places like South Dakota and so.
The fact that they would know names addresses phone numbers -- geographic coordinates.
Personal information confidential information.
On these farm and ranch families is extremely -- -- to these farmers and ranchers who were trying to go about their business and it and does it make their living.
And so let's say it's something that they are we've heard a lot we've heard a lot better from muggles in my state as -- from those in other states.
You have any evidence that this was a directive given somehow by anyone -- -- an agency or even higher in government TU.
The release this information more information and then really what was necessary or requested.
Well we're trying to get an answer that I sent a letter they have acknowledged that they did it and that it was wrong and but they haven't responded to the letter yet so we don't know exactly where it came from all we know is.
That this is a government agency again -- working it seems to be hand in glove with these left wing organizations releasing confidential information.
That could be used to target hardworking farm and ranch families across this country and it's it is it's -- you know again -- a typical I think based upon what we've seen with the IRS and the release of information confidential information to.
Pro Republica which is a left leaning organization.
This is a pattern in this administration and I think you crates of this growing credibility gap with the American people.
So quickly here the EPA actually gave isn't -- statement I'm just gonna pare phrase that they admit that they were wrong -- they said that -- asked for the information back.
And apparently received -- groups but to your point you say -- just out there it's out there how do you hold them accountable senator what what's the next step here.
In preventing this from happening again.
Well I've not -- a response back to my letter Jana but we've also followed up now a group of senators as you mentioned earlier with a series of questions.
Why did they have to release the personal information did they consult with Department of Agriculture which would have seemed to make a lot of sense.
If they've done a series of questions to try and get some.
Some oversight some accountability and transparency with regard to this -- so far we have not -- heard back so we're we're still awaiting an answer from the EPA.
Again it's hard to know exactly what was behind this who was behind this but I think those are all things we need to find out.
We're gonna take a closer look as well senator.
And we look forward to having you back on it a foxnews.com has been on the story since it first broken and we look forward said began following it and looking for.
Evidence of that pattern and and what exactly is next so we look forward have you back thank you so much thanks in.
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