I’m sure some of you remember all the fuss about the White House deleting emails? Apparently, the epidemic of government officials deleting their emails is spreading to the Governor of Missouri. According to a recent St. Louis Post-Dispatch article an employee of Governor Blunt’s was recently fired for sending Blunt an outline of Missouri law on the policy of Blunt and company deleting their emails:
The dismissal of the lawyer, Scott Eckersley, came at a time when the governor and his staff were under fire for saying e-mails on state computers were not necessarily public records. They also acknowledged that office e-mails were being routinely deleted.
The stance seemed to contradict Missouri law, which requires that many state government communications, paper or electronic, be stored for up to three years. Legal experts say e-mails are a vital record of how government decisions are made.
Eckersley, Blunt’s former deputy counsel, said in an interview Saturday that he had researched state law and emphasized verbally and in e-mails to Blunt’s staff that the governor’s office had a written policy specifying how electronic messages and other records were to be saved.
True to form, after firing the employee the republicans promptly engaged in a smear campaign:
A top official in Blunt’s administration said Eckersley’s firing had nothing to do with the handling of office e-mails. Eckersley was let go because “he was not performing at the skill level required and expected of a governor’s office employee,” Richard AuBuchon, chief counsel for the state Office of Administration, said on Saturday.
AuBuchon also alleged that Eckersley “was spending an inordinate amount of time” conducting legal work on state time for his father’s health care business. A dismissal letter from Blunt chief of staff Ed Martin mentioned Eckersley’s aid to his family’s business and included another accusation as well — that Eckersley had accessed a “group sex website.”
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