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Destruction of Evidence is Becoming the Norm

January 24, 2018

For Immediate Release

Media Contact: Cate Cullen (202)225-4921

Palmer: Destruction of Evidence is Becoming the Norm

Washington, DC – Congressman Gary Palmer (R-AL) released the following statement regarding the FBI text messages:

"The revelation that thousands of text messages exchanged between FBI agents critical of President Trump is reminiscent of what has happened in other investigations of potential and actual government misconduct. For instance, backup tapes containing thousands of Lois Lerner's emails were destroyed, even though the emails were under an evidence preservation order. Lerner was being investigated for using her position at the IRS to harass conservative tax-exempt organizations that were considered political enemies of the Obama Administration.

"When the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology sought text message records from EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy they found that she had permanently deleted almost 6,000, claiming they were all personal.

"According to the FBI, within days of a conference call with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's lawyers, an engineer with Platte River Network deleted emails from her private server despite knowing that the emails were under an evidence preservation order and a subpoena. As if destroying Ms. Clinton's emails were not enough, a laptop containing a copy of her emails from her private server - along with a thumb drive - were "lost" in the postal mail.

"It would appear that the preferred method of responding to investigations involving electronic communications and the potential for cover ups is the destruction of the storage mechanism or of the entire device.

"In regard to the latest incident of the "lost" text messages by the FBI, I am heartened to know that Attorney General Jeff Sessions considers this to be a serious matter and is committed to "…leaving no stone unturned to confirm with certainty why these text messages are not now available." This latest revelation about possible political bias only adds to the outrage of millions of Americans who are very concerned about the potential serious violations of law and civil liberties by members of the FBI and others. I commend House Oversight Committee Chairmen Trey Gowdy, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes for their pursuit of the truth and their determination to protect the American people from lawless actions by federal officials. They have my full support."