Certainly no Republican would ever have gotten away with "losing" so many emails involved in an investigation, right?
White House on Emails: "We Screwed Up"
By JOEL ROBERTS CBS/AP April 12, 2007, 11:27 AM
The White House admits that some e-mails about the U.S. Attorney firings may have been destroyed and that some staffers may have improperly done official business on Republican Party e-mail accounts, CBS News White House correspondent Jim Axelrod reports.
The claim that e-mails sent on a Republican Party account might have been lost was challenged Thursday by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, who quipped that even his teenage neighbor could find them.
"They say they have not been preserved. I don't believe that!" Leahy shouted from the Senate floor as the dispute over the firing of federal prosecutors continued at a high pitch. "That's like saying the dog ate my homework. It doesn't work that way."
"You can't erase e-mails, not today. They've gone through too many servers," said Leahy, D-Vt. "Those e-mails are there; they just don't want to produce them. We'll subpoena them if necessary."
Separately, Leahy's committee approved — but did not issue — new subpoenas to compel the administration to produce documents and testimony about the firings.
Another 1,000 pages of documents are about to be released by the Justice Department investigators, Axelrod reports.
White House officials insisted the administration is making a genuine effort to recover any missing e-mails that had been sent on an account sponsored by the Republican National Committee.
"I understand his point, but he's wrong," said spokeswoman Dana Perino.
But while Perino pushed back on questions about the e-mails, she also made an uncommonly candid admission.
"We're being very honest and forthcoming," she added. "I hope that he would understand the spirit in which we have come forward and tried to explain how we screwed up our policy and how we're working to fix it."