Veteran White House Employee
Blows Whistle On Gore
By Paul M. Rodriguez
Editor - Insight
In a stunning sworn statement, a current White House employee blows the whistle on Al Gore and his staff involving the storage -- and handling -- of emails into and out from the vice president's offfice complex -- emails that recently were discovered were lost due to technical glitches.
The staffer, Howard Sparks, has been at the White House for a number of years and in a four-page "declaration" obtained by Insight, he swears not only to having warned Gore's staff as far back as 1993 about making sure to back up emails on tapes and to put into place other safeguards, he also reveals that he warned co-workers that there were legal problems with the old "Big Brother" computer system officially known as the White House Office Data Base, or WHODB that Insight first revealed in exclusive stories years ago.
What is remarkable about Sparks' sworn statements made to Judicial Watch on June 19, 2000, is that he's still an employee of the White House in the Office of Administration, or OA, where he's worked since 1987 and holds the rank of a GS 14 and branch manager.
Sparks' statement about Gore concerning emails is sure to fuel speculation concerning the vice president's recent admissions that his office "lost" or otherwise failed to capture about a year's worth of emails under subpoena covering the 1997 to 1998 time periods. Gore and staff said they didn't know there were problems or that they had options other than the systems they claimed to have used that, admittingly, failed.
But Sparks, in a statement sure to cause great peril to his employment, says that Gore's top guy way back in 1993, Mike Gill, dismissed such issues and assured the support staff of OA that Gore & Company would take care of their email systems separate, effectively, from that offered by carreer folks like Sparks.
"Mr. Gill did not care about these legal requirements and essentially told us to get lost, that the vice president's office would take care its own records," Sparks says in a four-page sworn statement.
Gore's office has said that this glitch occurred because of a problem with computers and a failure of support staff to have established an adequate system to protect such messages on backup tapes.
Sparks' stunning "testimony" however puts to bed this reasoning as false given that he claims the Gore camp as far back as 1993 was warned that emails had to be archieved and that, to comply with the law, they needed to be backed up with duplicate tapes or other devices. However, this was not done -- a fact acknowledged recently by Gore himself and his own staff.
Sparks also said that, despite warnings from professional staff at the White House, Bill Clinton & Company failed to establish adequate safeguards to both provide and safeguard electronic communications as required by law.
In essence, the revelations of Sparks to Judicial Watch confirm previous statements obtained initially by Insight from other White House staff -- both current and former -- that despite warnings and systems in place, the Clinton/Gore White House dismissed or otherwise evaded systems to provide for adequate record keeping of records.
Moreover, Sparks' testimony as an existing and valued employee of the White House will add substantial credibility to issues raised by Judicial Watch and others,including the federal Campaign Task Force and Congress, that the Clinton/Gore White House has engaged in schemes to avoid proper record-keeping notwithstanding various laws and orders by courts to maintain such records.
For example, eamils: Sparks and Sheryl Mills (a former manager at the White House telecommunications office who was, effectively fired for blowing the whistle about WHODB and as-yet unseen long-distance telephone records the White House says don't exist) among others, have filed sworn statements (see Insight's web page for related stories), that could leade investigators to hordes of documents that have been under subpoena but never turned over by the White House.
As with "Project X" involving the White House emails fiasco that Insight first revealed to the public, it can now be revealed for the first time that yet another unknown repository of data concerning White House emails and related communications exists that federal investigators have no knowledge of, nor does the White House.
Just as with the the so-called emails involving Project X and the missing long-distance telephone records the White House has long maintained don't exist or, at best, claims shows no information, Insight has been told that there apparently exists a secret database of previously unknown information that, technically, should have captured EVERY single communication INTO AND OUT FROM the White House, the Executive Office of the President, and the offices of Vice President Al Gore.
This potential "unknown" trove of treasures is located in the automatic back up tapes of the computer systems' firewall, Insight is told. "It is something that no one would have bothered to have considered because it is purely a technical matter," an insider tells Insight.
"But, unless its tapes have been erased, every single bit of data that went into or out from the White House [complex] would be automatically stored by the computer sytem on the firewall backup tapes that automatically are stored," said an expert familiar with the White House computer systems. "Only a few people know about these particular tapes and, unless they have been overwritten, they exist somehwere...they can provide unique data.:"
The Sparks declaration is now among a growing list of statements from current AND former White House staf with no axes to grind who reveal information contrary to that which White House officials have either given to the press or to federal investigatgors, whether at the law enforcement level or in Congress.
Besides Sparks and Hall, Betty Lamburth has given a statement providing information contray to the White House position, as has a former senior lawyer at the White House.
Given the late stages of the Clinton presidency, it's unknown what, if any, consequences may arise from statements such as those provided by Sparks. However, for Gore, such sworn statements can only raise problems as surely as the campaign season moves towards the conventions and more people line up to spill the beans.
By: Paul M. Rodriguez
Insight >>

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