Another Email Scandal


As a follow-on to Nick’s post about the missing White House emails, I should point out that there’s another email scandal brewing—this one in Missouri, where the former deputy legal counsel to Governor Matt Blunt (son of House Minority Whip Roy Blunt) has alleged that the governor and four of his aides schemed to destroy potentially damaging electronic communications. According to a suit filed yesterday by Scott Eckersley, Blunt’s one-time legal counsel Henry Herschel instructed staffers to destroy email records related to the politically-motivated firing of a state official, rather than turn them over to the press under a public records request. Ed Martin, then serving as Blunt’s chief of staff, subsequently “instructed the governor’s office to delete e-mail in inbox and trash files ‘to ensure they did not have to be turned over to the press or the public in response to Sunshine requests,'” according to the Kansas City Star.

And this is what happened when reporters confronted Blunt about the allegations earlier today:

At the governor’s annual prayer breakfast, Blunt declined to answer questions from The Associated Press about Eckersley’s lawsuit but pledged to discuss it at a later news conference on drunken driving laws. At that news conference, however, Blunt devoted barely 2 minutes to questions about the lawsuit—refusing to discuss it any detail—and then turned his back on reporters and walked out of the room while ignoring continued questions.

One More Thing

And it's a big one. Mother Jones is launching a new Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on the corruption that is both the cause and result of the crisis in our democracy.

The more we thought about how Mother Jones can have the most impact right now, the more we realized that so many stories come down to corruption: People with wealth and power putting their interests first—and often getting away with it.

Our goal is to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We're aiming to create a reporting position dedicated to uncovering corruption, build a team, and let them investigate for a year—publishing our stories in a concerted window: a special issue of our magazine, video and podcast series, and a dedicated online portal so they don't get lost in the daily deluge of headlines and breaking news.

We want to go all in, and we've got seed funding to get started—but we're looking to raise $500,000 in donations this spring so we can go even bigger. You can read about why we think this project is what the moment demands and what we hope to accomplish—and if you like how it sounds, please help us go big with a tax-deductible donation today.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate