Rep. Anna Eshoo, D-Palo Alto, who chairs the House Intelligence Subcommittee on Intelligence Community Management, wrote Wednesday to U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales urging him to determine whether Vice President Dick Cheney’s office is required to comply with government-wide regulations on handling classified information.
Since 2004, the Office of the Vice President has refused to submit to routine compliance audits of its handling of classified information, and now asserts it’s not bound by regulations on classified information security because it is not an “entity within the executive branch.”
Keep in mind this is an office in which two people have earned felony convictions in cases related to the mishandling of classified information: Chief of Staff I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby and aide Leandro Aragoncillo.
The National Archives’ Information Security Oversight Office, which ensures compliance with the regulations, asked the Attorney General in January to rule on whether the regulations apply to the Vice President’s office. So far, Gonzalez has not responded.
“Because the Office of the Vice President is deeply involved with classified programs, it is critical for the Attorney General to uphold the integrity of the system that safeguards classified information,” Eshoo said in a news release.
OK, let’s all wait for Gonzalez’ response: one-Mississippi, two-Mississippi, three-Mississippi…