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Thread: Obama’s New HHS Secretary Proved Her Loyalty to Clinton by Digging Through a Dead Man

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  1. #1
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    Obama’s New HHS Secretary Proved Her Loyalty to Clinton by Digging Through a Dead Man

    Obama’s New HHS Secretary Proved Her Loyalty to Clinton by Digging Through a Dead Man’s Trash

    BY: Andrew Stiles // April 11, 2014 1:15 pm

    President Obama on Friday formally nominated Sylvia Mathews Burwell to head the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) following the botched resignation of Kathleen Sebelius.

    Burwell served in several positions under the Bill Clinton administration, including as a deputy aide to then-budget director Jack Lew. In July 1995, Burwell (then Sylvia Mathews) was one of several key aides questioned by the Senate Whitewater Committee regarding the death of deputy White House counsel Vince Foster.

    Foster’s death was officially ruled a suicide. The Clinton White House eventually admitted to misleading investigators about how senior officials had seized and disposed of files relating to first couple’s controversial investments in the Whitewater Development Corporation, a failed real estate venture.

    Clinton spokeswoman Dee Dee Myers admitted that then-White House counsel Bernard Nussbaum, who had recovered documents relating to the Whitewater controversy from Foster’s office after his death, did not turn over the documents to the Clinton family’s personal attorney, contrary to what White House official had claimed.

    Nussbaum had actually given the documents to Hillary Clinton’s chief of staff, who placed them in a White House safe for five days before being turned over to the family attorney.

    Under questioning, Sylvia Mathews and her colleagues denied impeding a police investigation into Foster’s death after his body was found in a northern Virginia park.

    According to the New York Times, Mathews testified “in laborious detail about what she had found in Mr. Foster’s garbage on the night he died.”

    That experience may come in handy as she prepares to oversee the implementation of Obamacare.
    Last edited by Newmexican; 04-11-2014 at 01:55 PM.
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  2. #2
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    No Intention To Question First Lady

    Published: July 26, 1995

    The chairman of the Senate committee investigating the Whitewater affair today ruled out calling Hillary Rodham Clinton as a witness unless strong evidence emerged of her involvement in the mishandling of papers from the office of a White House aide who committed suicide two years ago.

    The chairman, Senator Alfonse M. D'Amato, said in response to a request by Senator Lauch Faircloth, Republican of North Carolina, that Mrs. Clinton testify that she would not be called "unless there is clear and convincing facts and reason" to do so.

    "It would have to be very, very, very strong evidence and facts that have been established very, very clearly," said Mr. D'Amato, Republican of New York. "Otherwise there will be no appearance before this committee of the First Lady."

    The committee today began what will be weeks of intensive questioning of White House aides about whether Mrs. Clinton, in advance of investigators, had told officials to remove papers from the office of Vincent W. Foster Jr., her close friend and former law partner who was the deputy White House counsel at the time he killed himself on July 20, 1993.

    This afternoon, Patsy L. Thomasson, a White House aide who, like Mr. Foster, was a friend of the Clintons' from their Arkansas days, described to the committee a harried search through Mr. Foster's office for a suicide note on the night of his death.

    The committee also heard from the White House communication director, Mark D. Gearan, about the distress of Justice Department officials, including Attorney General Janet Reno, over the White House's handling of the official search of Mr. Foster's office.

    In the days to come, the committee will be asking a series of witnesses whether Mrs. Clinton participated in the decision to prevent investigators from looking at sensitive papers in the office after Mr. Foster's body was found in a park in Virginia overlooking the Potomac River.

    In the months before his death, Mr. Foster handled many sensitive political and personal affairs of the Clintons, including the couple's investment in the Whitewater land venture and their handling of tax issues raised by their sale of their stock in the venture after the 1992 election.

    Mrs. Clinton's role in the handling of papers in Mr. Foster's office after his death is a central unresolved question of the investigation. On Wednesday, a Secret Service agent is expected to testify that he saw Mrs. Clinton's senior aide, Margaret Williams, remove papers from Mr. Foster's office, an assertion Ms. Williams is expected to vigorously contest when she also appears before the committee this week.

    Also today, Mr. D'Amato said the committee's lawyers had reviewed heavily edited portions of White House files in Mr. Foster's office that had been supplied to the committee and had concluded that the lawyers for the Clintons had not inappropriately removed any Whitewater material. Mr. D'Amato said "pertinent" records would continue to be made available to the committee, and he praised the Clinton's lawyer, David E. Kendall, for his cooperation.

    The day's most vivid testimony came from Ms. Thomasson, who described how she was electronically paged at a restaurant by her boss, David Watkins, who ordered her to return to the White House to look for a possible suicide note in Mr. Foster's office on the second floor of the West Wing.

    After talking to Mr. Watkins, Ms. Thomasson went to the White House, where she ran into Bernard W. Nussbaum, the White House counsel. She said she had only recently met the counsel and rarely had contact with him.

    "Mr. Nussbaum never talked much to me because I was so low on the food chain," Ms. Thomasson said.

    The two then went into Mr. Foster's office at about 11 P.M. that evening.

    "I sat at Vince's desk and opened drawers and looked on all surfaces," she said. As she searched, she said, Mr. Nussbaum paced the office back and forth, running his hands through his hair and looking deeply upset.

    She said that after a few minutes, Mr. Nussbaum left the office and Ms. Williams, Mrs. Clinton's aide, arrived. As Ms. Thomasson sat in Mr. Foster's desk chair, looking for a suicide note, Ms. Williams sat across on a sofa, sobbing.

    Ms. Thomasson said Ms. Williams then left and Mr. Nussbaum returned.

    "Bernie came in and said, 'We haven't found anything so we should probably get out of there,' " Ms. Thomasson said. "We left empty-handed."

    Ms. Thomasson testified that none of the officials had removed any documents or files from Mr. Foster's office that evening. Nonetheless, Republicans criticized her for rifling through Mr. Foster's papers at a time in which she had not received any security clearance.

    Reading from his notes of July 29, 1993, Mr. Gearan, recounted a discussion he had had in which the Deputy Attorney General, Philip B. Heymann, said that he and Ms. Reno had strongly disagreed with Mr. Nussbaum's control of the investigation.

    Recording Mr. Heymann's views, Mr. Gearan wrote in his own shorthand: "There's a sense from Park Police and including Phil and DOJ and probably Washington Field office that too much of investigation and inquiry before, when, after was exercised by WH and those too close to Vince." Mr. Heymann also indicated that because the White House had controlled the investigation "in all ways," the Justice Department could not legitimately claim it had conducted its own independent inquiry, according to Mr. Gearan's notes.

    His notes indicate that there had been "heated discussions" about the way the papers were handled between Mr. Heymann and Mr. Nussbaum and that Ms. Reno had been distressed that Mr. Nussbaum had initially overlooked a note Mr. Foster had written reflecting his unhappiness with Washington. Ms. Reno was concerned, according to Mr. Gearan's notes, that it took about 30 hours between the time the note was found to be turned over to investigators. The White House has said it took that long because aides wanted to apprise Mr. Foster's widow, Lisa Foster, about the note's contents.

    The committee also focused today on Mr. Foster's office trash. Members questioned Sylvia Mathews, a former White House aide, in laborious detail about what she had found in Mr. Foster's garbage on the night he died. Other than a few routine documents, the garbage contained nothing that shed light on Mr. Foster's thinking, said Ms. Mathews, who is now chief of staff at the Treasury Department.

    Republicans on the committee found it significant, however, that Ms. Mathews had also managed to retrieve a special bag of garbage containing classified and sensitive papers that was usually destroyed by the Secret Service. The contents of that bag were never examined by anyone to see if Mr. Foster had left anything in it that might shed light on his state of mind.

    Ms. Mathews said that she got the bag from the Secret Service and began looking briefly through it, when she discovered that it contained all of the classified garbage from the West Wing. Concerned about a possible security breach, she sought Mr. Nussbaum's opinion about whether to continue looking through it. She said she was told by Mr. Nussbaum that since Mr. Foster did not have a classified garbage bin in his office, it was doubtful that there would be anything from Mr. Foster in the bag. Therefore, she said, Mr. Nussbaum told her to return the bag unexamined to the Secret Service to be disposed.

    The White House said after the hearing that a Secret Service agent on detail that evening said Mr. Nussbaum had been mistaken and that in fact there had been a special classified garbage bin, or "burn bag," in Mr. Foster's office. But the agent also said Mr. Foster's classified bin had never been emptied into the bag that Ms. Mathews had retrieved.

    Photos: Mark D. Gearan, left, the White House communication director; Sylvia Mathews, a former White House aide, and David Watkins, former assistant to the President for management and administration, being sworn in yesterday before testifying at the Senate hearing on the Whitewater affair.; Patsy L. Thomasson, a White House aide, testifying yesterday at the Whitewater hearing. (Photographs by David Scull/The New York Times)

    CSPAN Video of her testimony here.

    Last edited by Newmexican; 04-11-2014 at 04:02 PM.

  3. #3
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    Congressional Record (Vol. 140, No. 104)

    House of Representatives, Tuesday, August 2, 1994

    Part 1 of 2

    The SPEAKER pro tempore:
    Under the Speaker's announced policy of February 11, 1994,
    and June 10, 1994, the gentleman from Indiana [Mr. Burton]
    is recognized for 60 minutes as the minority leader's designee.

    Mr. BURTON of Indiana:
    Mr. Speaker, over the past several weeks there has been a lot
    of questions about the death of Vince Foster and the connection of his
    death to the Whitewater investigation, and I have had nine people on
    my staff at the Republican Study Committee and my personal staff and
    some outside sources investigating this, because the Committee on
    Banking, Finance, and Urban Affairs here in the House that is doing
    the Whitewater investigation on a party line vote has limited the
    scope of the investigation to such a degree that one Member said that
    if the same principles had been applied to the O.J. Simpson case, the
    one thing you could ask O.J. Simpson is "How was your trip to Chicago?"
    You couldn't ask any other questions. That is how limited the
    investigation is. There is a deliberate attempt to minimize the
    investigation and, I think, to cover up a lot of the facts.
    On the Senate side we have a similar problem. It is not
    quite as bad over there, but nevertheless a lot of the information
    that must come out regarding Vince Foster's death and his connection
    to the Whitewater matter needs to be explored.
    <19:20> (The Record indicates time of day.)
    So tonight, even though I have been castigated by a lot of
    the people in the media, even though some Members of the Senate
    committee and the House Banking Committee have indicated that we
    have made some comments that are not very understanding as far as
    Mr. Foster's family is concerned, I feel compelled to go through
    this tonight one more with one addition. Because we have been taken
    to task because of things I have said on the floor, I went out and
    found the confidential witness, the man that found Vince Foster's
    body, and I got a sworn statement. He swore before God that the
    things that I am going to read to you tonight are factual.
    So I am going to go into the entire litany, the entire
    chronology of Vince Foster's death and the connection to Whitewater.
    Then I will read to you excerpts -- very important excerpts. I would
    read the whole thing to you, but we would be here all night because
    it is a 50-page sworn statement. But I will read to you excerpts
    that verify everything I have been saying before this body.
    On July 20, 1993, Vince Foster left his White House office
    at 1 p.m. He was later found dead by a confidential witness at Fort
    Marcy Park. The confidential witness is the person that gave this
    sworn testimony to me. Nobody knows who he is except two FBI agents,
    G. Gordon Liddy, and myself.
    Emergency medical service personnel discovered the body
    shortly after they arrived at the park at 6:09 p.m. The confidential
    witness was interviewed by G. Gordon Liddy on March 27. He was
    interviewed by me on July 21, and in between he was interviewed by
    the FBI agents who Mr. Liddy urged him to talk to.
    The confidential witness told Mr. Liddy and me that he
    approached to within two and one-half to three feet of Vince Foster's
    head and he leaned over and looked directly down into Mr. Foster's
    eyes. He stated very specifically that the head was looking straight
    up and that the hands were at his side, palms up with no gun in either
    The Fiske report quotes the confidential witness as saying that
    he may have been mistaken and that there may have been a gun in Foster's
    hands, that he did not see because of the dense foliage and the position
    of the hand.
    The confidential witness told me that the FBI agents pressed him
    on the issue of the gun, asking him as many as 20 to 25 times if he was
    sure there was no gun. And according to the confidential witness, the
    FBI said, "what if the trigger guard was around the thumb and the thumb
    was obscured by foliage and the rest of the gun was obscured by the
    foliage and the hand?" In other words, the trigger guard would be
    around the thumb, the gun would be underneath the thumb, and a leaf
    would be over that and you would not see it.
    The confidential witness, after being asked about 20 to 25
    times, said, "If what you describe were the case, then I suppose it
    could be possible because I did not count his fingers, but I am sure
    that the palms were definitely opened and facing up."
    At this point the confidential witness still had not seen a
    copy of the photograph of Foster's hand that was shown on ABC news.
    The photo showed the right hand palm down with the thumb trapped in
    the trigger guard. He had not seen that. When I went to see this
    gentleman, I showed him the photo. He was sitting at his kitchen
    table, and he stood up and walked around the table twice, saying,
    "This is not the way it was; that is not the way it was! Those hands,
    that hand was moved!"
    Why did he get so angry when he saw the photo? He told me not
    only that the hand had been moved, but that some of the things
    he told the FBI were not mentioned in the report. For
    instance, the vegetation at the bottom of the body had been
    trampled like somebody had been walking around there. Why was
    no mention of the trampled vegetation in the Fiske report?
    The confidential witness also reported that he saw a wine
    cooler bottle near Mr. Foster's body. Such a bottle was not noted in
    the Fiske report. We are going to talk about these wine cooler bottles
    a little later. There was, in the Fiske report, a blood stain on
    the right side of Mr. Foster's face. Mr. Fiske's report noted that
    the blood stain on Foster's right cheek and his right shoulder were
    inconsistent with the head being upright. In other words, if the
    head was sitting up, how did the blood get on the cheek and the
    right shoulder? So somebody had to move the head.
    But the problem is, before the police or anybody got there,
    the head was already straight up. So who moved the head? The report
    describes the stain on his cheek as a contact stain, typical of having
    been caused by a blotting action such as would happen with a blood-
    soaked object brought in contact with the side of the face and taken
    So at sometime his face had to be in contact with his shoulder,
    according to the report. Mr. Fiske's report assumes that one of the
    early emergency personnel that came to the park move the head. But
    the confidential witness said the head was already moved. And he was
    the first person to see the body before anybody got there.
    In addition, Mr. Fiske, after interviewing all the people at
    the scene, fails to identify anybody that admits to touching the body
    and moving the head. So he assumes it was moved by somebody after the
    body was found, but he does not know who it was. Yet the confidential
    witness that found the body said it was already straight up. Why did
    Mr. Fiske assume that one of the persons who arrived after the
    confidential witness moved his head, when the confidential witness was
    the first person to find Foster's body? He said the head was facing
    straight up at the time.
    Now, the FBI did not find the bullet or skull fragments at
    the park. On July 20, 1993, the park police conducted a search for
    the bullet that killed Foster using only one metal detector. And they
    found nothing at all after a lengthy search. Why did they only use one
    metal detector? This is one of the highest-ranking people in the
    Clinton White House. They had one metal detector running around
    through the woods there, and this did not find anything. Then, nine
    months later, on April 4, 1994, sixteen FBI agents and experts searched
    Fort Marcy for the bullet and they found twelve -- not one, not two,
    but twelve -- modern-day bullets. But they did not find the one that
    killed Vince Foster.
    The FBI searched immediately beneath where Foster's body was
    found by digging and hand-sifting the soil and other debris. They
    excavated down a foot and a half. They found no bullet and no bone
    fragments. In the search for the bullet, the FBI personnel marked out
    a grid of the most likely area for the bullet to be found after passing
    through Foster's skull. The area was searched using a metal detector.
    Once again, twelve modern-day bullets were found, but the FBI lab
    determined that none were the one that shot Vince Foster or came out
    of his gun.
    Now, I contacted a ballistics expert in California who stated
    that after passing through a man's skull, a .38 caliber bullet should
    travel no more than 1,200 to 1,600 feet -- or about 300 to 500 yards.
    The FBI should have been able to find that bullet with all the people
    that were out there and all the expertise they had, if the bullet was
    in the park. So why was it not found?
    Get this. Once again, this is very important. There were no
    fingerprints on the gun, and there were no fingerprints on 27 separate
    pieces of the suicide note. Can you imagine a suicide note torn into
    27 pieces without a fingerprint on it? You would have to wear surgical
    gloves. Here is how he explained that. The FBI found no fingerprints
    on the .38 caliber Colt revolver. The Fiske report states, "the
    latent fingerprints can be destroyed due to exposure to heat."
    So if it was a real hot day, they are saying, the fingerprints
    could have melted off the gun. Yet they do not explain why,
    when they took the trigger guard off the gun, there was a
    fingerprint on it that had been on there probably for years. But the
    fingerprints that Vince Foster allegedly put on the gun were melted
    off. I went out to the site and walked all over that area. There is
    no sun that hits the place where they found his body. The sun could
    not have done that. Even on a hot day, it is very doubtful, according
    to forensic experts I talked to, that there would be no sign of any
    fingerprints on the gun, but it was completely smooth, no
    fingerprints on the gun, except a little bit on the trigger guard
    where they found his thumb. I do not know how you could hold a gun
    with on or both hands and not leave one fingerprint.
    In addition, the note that was found in Foster's briefcase
    was torn, as I said, in 27 pieces and had no prints. It was not
    exposed to the heat. So why were no fingerprints found on either
    the gun or the note? Makes no sense.
    There was no dirt on his shoes. There was a little bit of
    mica, but there was no dirt on his shoes. When Mr. Foster's clothing
    was examined by the FBI lab, "it did not contain any coherent soil."
    They did find small parcels of mica, which is off of leaves,
    on much of Foster's clothing, including his shoes, which is consistent
    with the soil in Fort Marcy Park.
    The Fiske report states that it was dry on the day Foster died
    and that foliage leading up to and around Foster's body was dense.
    It concludes that "it was unlikely that there was a great deal of
    exposed moist soil in the park that would have soiled Foster's shoes."
    Foster would have had to walk a long way from his car to the
    second cannon. I walked all the way from the parking lot up to that
    second cannon, and it was a dry day and I had dust all over my shoes.
    It is about 300 yards.
    For them to say there was no dirt on his shoes does not make
    any sense, unless possibly he had been moved to that position. Even
    on a dry day his shoes would have been stained by either grass or dirt
    or at least dust. Why was no dirt or dust or grass found on his shoes?
    Now, there was blond to light brown hair that did not match Mr.
    Foster's hair found on his tee shirt, pants, belt, socks, and shoes.
    In response to a question from Robert Novak, Mr. Fiske said, "While we
    have not concluded where the blond hair came from, there is not evidence
    to suggest that it provides any evidence of circumstances connected to
    his death." How does he come to that kind of a conclusion?
    Carpet fibers of various colors were found on his jacket, tie,
    shirt, shorts, pants, belt, socks, and shoes. Did they check his
    office to see if the carpet fibers were off of his office carpet?
    Did they check his home to see if the carpet fibers were out of his
    home, and if they were not from either one of those places, where did
    those carpet fibers come from?
    It is not mentioned in the report. You just forget about that.
    Yet everybody, the media and everybody, is accepting this report at face
    value, even though the confidential witness that found the body said the
    hands were moved and so was the head.
    Why didn't Mr. Fiske attempt to find out who the blond hair
    belonged to? Why didn't Mr. Fiske attempt to determine where the carpet
    fibers and wool fibers found on Foster's body came from? Why would Mr.
    Fiske assume that this evidence was not relevant without investigating
    it first?
    Then 70 pages of the report are devoted to the credentials of
    the four forensic experts that wrote the report on Mr. Foster's death.
    They had four experts that wrote a report saying it was a suicide at
    Fort Marcy Park, but they based their conclusions, probably 90 percent
    of them, on the coroner's report.
    Now if the coroner made a mistake and he screwed up the report,
    then their report has to be questioned as well. Let us check on the
    coroner. He testified two days ago before the Senate.
    Fiske goes to great length to highlight the credentials of thee
    four pathologists, as I just mentioned. Their resumes take up 70 pages
    of the report. Yet none of these people ever saw Foster's body, because
    he had been dead and buried for 9 months before they wrote the report.
    Their findings were wholly reliant on Dr. James Beyer, northern
    Virginia's deputy medical examiner.
    He said that Vince Foster's death was consistent with a self-
    inflicted would, but according to the Washington Times, Dr. Beyer, to
    coroner, overlooked critical evidence in the 1989 Timothy Easley
    stabbing and supported a police finding that the death was a suicide.
    The death was later changed to murder -- homicide -- after an outside
    expert, Dr. Harry Bonnell, noted that Dr. Beyer's original report
    contained glaring errors, including a missing stab wound in the
    victim's hand where he was defending himself and getting the color
    of his hair wrong.
    The coroner did not even get the color of his hair right.
    This is the guy on which they are basing the entire forensic report
    of Vince Foster. The autopsy report said Tim Easley's hair was gray
    when his hair was dark brown.
    Regarding the stab wound in his hand, Dr. Bonnell said, "I
    cannot understand how any competent forensic pathologist would miss a
    stab wound in the hand." Dr. Beyer later said, "The cut on Easley's
    right hand was consistent with a needle mark," though he noted no such
    mark on his report. Forensic pathologists are supposed to make note of
    everything in their reports.
    Dr. Bonnell also said that it was doubtful that the Easley
    stab wound to the chest could have been self-inflicted. He said it
    could not have been self-inflicted, and yet the coroner said it was.
    Eventually, it was found out that Easley's girlfriend, Candy
    Wharton, was the killer, and she admitted stabbing Easley to death.
    So he missed it.
    He made a terrible mistake, and he missed very important
    things that any forensic expert would have found, according to Dr.
    Bonnell -- any competent expert.
    Then in December 1991, in another autopsy, Dr. Beyer ruled
    the death of Thomas Burkett, Jr., as "consistent with a self-inflicted
    wound," and this was a gunshot to the mouth, much like Vince Foster's.
    According to the New York Post, a second autopsy conducted by a Dr.
    Erik Mitchell detailed serious omissions in the Beyer autopsy.
    This second autopsy came after the family had the body exhumed.
    They dug him up. It noted trauma and discoloration to this gentleman's
    right ear, which could indicate he was beaten to death before the shot
    was fired into his mouth. His ear had been all smashed up, and at the
    funeral they noticed it and they thought he had been shot in the ear.
    But he had not been. He had been shot in the mouth.
    Burkett's family noted that the ear was so disfigured and
    bloody, they thought he had been shot there. Dr. Beyer never even
    mentioned the trauma to the man's ear in the report.
    Dr. Beyer also failed to identify a fractured lower jaw. His
    jaw was broken. He did not mention that in the report, which could
    also indicate a beating.
    The second autopsy also noted that Burkett's lungs had not been
    dissected, although the report said they had been. He said he did a
    complete autopsy, cut open the man's chest, checked his lungs. When
    they exhumed the body and did the second autopsy, they found he lied.
    He did not even do that. This is the man on whom they based their
    findings in the Vince Foster case.
    The second autopsy in this case also found no trace of gunpowder
    in the mouth, and Dr. Beyer said he inadvertently left the section
    for powder burns off the gunshot wound chart.
    So why did Mr. Fiske's pathologists base so much, if not all,
    of their report on the conclusions of a medical examiner who has been
    challenged in this past for flawed and erroneous autopsies? Why did Mr.
    Fiske's pathologists base so much of their report on the autopsy of a
    medical examiner who has a history of omitting important evidence from
    his autopsy reports?
    The Fiske report states that Dr. Beyer was unable to take x-
    rays of Mr. Foster's head because his x-ray machine was broken.
    However, the Park Police report, which was submitted last summer,
    quotes Dr. Beyer as stating that the x-rays of Mr. Foster's head
    indicated that there was no evidence of bullet fragments in his skull.
    Determining if there are bullet fragments in the skull is very
    important to determining how far the bullet would have traveled. Did
    Dr. Beyer take x-rays of Vince Foster's head or didn't he? At the
    Senate the other day, he said he did not, so why did he tell the Park
    Police he did? I don't know.
    Mr. Speaker, the security guards, directly, about 100 yards
    away from the place they found Vince Foster's body, across Chain Bridge
    Road -- there is the Saudi Arabian Ambassador's residence. There are
    five trained security guards there all the time. There are three that
    roam around, one in a van and one in a little security guardhouse there.
    Their people were there all the time. They even checked that
    park across the street occasionally, because they were concerned about
    somebody trying to get to the Saudi Arabian Ambassador, and they said
    that day they heard no gunshot. The Fiske report says that as a result
    of traffic out there and construction traffic, and because with a gun
    in the mouth in that position there would not have been a lot of noise.
    We, at my house, with a homicide detective, tried to re-create
    a head and fired a .38 cal barrel into that, to see if the sound could
    be heard from 100 yards away. Even though there was an earth mover
    moving around in the background, making all kinds of racket, you could
    hear the bullet clearly.
    Now, this is the information that I have used in the past. I
    went out to see the confidential witness, and when I showed him the
    picture, he was upset. He told me that rather than me writing down a
    statement for him to sign, he wanted to give me a statement in his own
    words. I let him dictate a statement to me in his own words and he
    signed it.
    I came back to this body and I gave my colleagues that signed
    statement. I did not give his name, because I promised I would keep
    his confidence. However, I read into the record what he said, and I
    sent it out to many people in the media.
    Mr. Speaker, some people said, "We don't know if Burton is
    credible or not, we do not know if he is making this up," so
    they started questioning whether or not I was just once again beating
    a dead horse.
    What did I do? I called the confidential witness there to get
    his sworn statement.
    So last Thursday night on July 28, I took two other Congressmen,
    Congressman DANA ROHRABACHER of California and Congressman JOHN MICA
    of Florida, with me, and we took a court reporter from the Block Court
    Reporting Services and we recorded 49 pages of statements from the
    confidential witness.
    So tonight, Mr. Speaker, I want to read into the RECORD
    excerpts from that which will verify everything that I have said.
    This man was sworn and he took an oath before God that what he is
    saying is absolutely correct.
    So we started off. I said, "Why don't we start off by reading
    into the record what you said?" Here is the confidential witness
    reading into the record:
    "Involving the statement about the gun in Vince Foster's hand,
    I made it very clear that the palms of his hands were facing up and at
    his sides. The agents investigating stated that the gun was hooked
    on his thumb and partially obscured by the back of his hand. Based on
    their explanation of how the gun was being held, I conceded that all
    that was visible -- that if all that was visible was the trigger guard
    on his thumb, and the dense foliage, that I could have missed seeing it.
    I again stated that I saw both of the man's palms, but did not count
    his fingers.
    "After having seen the photo of the hand and the gun, I am
    sure the hand had been moved, because the palms were both face up
    when I saw Mr. Foster's body."
    Then I started questioning him as well as did Congressman
    ROHRABACHER and Congressman MICA.
    "Would you tell us how close you were to the body and how
    close you got to his face, his hand and everything else?"
    The confidential witness said, "I stood directly over the top
    of his head at the head of the berm. My right foot, I'm sure that it
    was my right foot, was somewhere between 24 and 30 inches from the top
    of his head. No closer. At that point, leaning over with my left foot
    extended behind me, I looked directly down into his eyes from about 3
    feet to 4 feet maximum above his face, my face from his."
    I said, "You were directly above him?"
    He said, "Directly above him, looking straight down the
    body. The man's head was facing straight up. If it was tilted, it
    was tilted very slightly because I looked into both eyes. I was
    questioned numerous times by the agents about are you sure the head
    wasn't tilted, and I kept telling, no, I looked straight down into
    both eyes. Do you want me to go on and explain what I saw?"
    I said, "Yeah. Go ahead and explain what you saw."
    He said, "I saw blood traces on his nose and around his lips.
    There was not streams of blood on the side of his face. There
    was not trickles of blood as indicated in the Foster report. I was
    looking straight down into the man's face and saw the blood." On his
    mouth and nose.
    Congressman Mica said, "Was there a gun in the hands?"
    The confidential witness says, "There was no gun in his hand.
    His -- both palms were face up, thumbs out to the side."
    Congressman MICA: "You did not see a gun?"
    He said, "I did not see a gun next to the body."
    Congressman MICA, "Did you touch the body or did you shake him?"
    The confidential witness said, "Oh, God, no. I wouldn't touch
    him for no amount. I mean, no way would I disturb evidence, period."
    Then I said, "I want you to look at this picture because you say
    you saw no gun in the hands."
    And I showed him once again the hand that was on ABC News, the
    He said, "I also, when I saw nothing in his hands, I leaned to
    both sides of his head and to the back of his head to see if he had been
    hit in the head and saw nothing visible."
    Congressman MICA said, "Did you look at his hands again?"
    He says, "I did not look at his hands again because I clearly
    saw his hands were empty and he had no signs that he had, was defending
    himself or something."
    Then I said, "Now, you said -- what did you see beside the body?"
    He said, "There was a wine cooler bottle laying I would say 24
    to 30 inches to the right, between his shoulder and his elbow, laying
    on the berm but on the down side of the hill being held up by some twigs
    because it's a very steep grade."
    Then I said, "Was it sitting straight up or just laying on its
    He says, "Laying sideways still probably one quarter of its
    contents in the bottle."
    Then Congressman MICA said, "Did you see -- you said the palms
    were out?"
    And the confidential witness said once again, "The palms were
    face up."
    I said, "Both? Both palms?"
    He said, "Right beside him neatly. Just like that."
    And he showed us, just like that.
    He said, "So that they were not in this position?" Congress
    MICA rolled his hands over.
    He said, "It was not in that position as all."
    Then I said, "Tell me about the picture. You -- the FBI --
    you asked the FBI what, about the picture, and the head?"
    The confidential witness said, "Numerous times."
    I said, "What did you ask them about the head and --"
    He said, "If you will show me the picture."
    This is what he said to the FBI agents.
    He said, "If you will show me the picture of the head and the
    picture of his hands that you said there was no gun in -- that I said
    there was no gun in and you said there was, then I could tell you point
    blank if somebody tampered with it, with Mr. Foster's body."
    Then I said, "What did they say when you asked them to see the
    And this is what he said the FBI people said. "Well, it will
    jeopardize our investigation. I cannot show it to you at this time.
    We will be more than glad to show it to you when all this investigation
    is over and that was the common answer I got from the FBI every time."
    Then I said, "Over how long a period of time -- how many times
    did they say that to you?"
    He said, "4, 5 times I directly inquired, let me see the
    They never let him see the picture of the hands.
    Congressman MICA said, "You have never seen this picture
    The confidential witness said, "I had never seen that picture
    until the Congressman" -- that is me -- "handed it to me. Mr. Liddy
    had told me that that picture had been published somewhere but I had
    never seen it or I would have probably been -- I know I would have been
    Then I said, "So you were no more than 2 feet, 3 feet above his
    He said, "I would say 2 to 3 feet. I had said 24 to 30 inches,
    my face was from his face."
    The he went on to say that he thought he had been there for a
    while because his clothes were very tight. There was a stain, just
    about like that, he showed me, on his shoulder.
    Congressman ROHRABACHER said, "What color?"
    He said, "On his right shoulder. It was a -- the stain on his
    shoulder was --"
    "Was it red? Or was it blood?" said Congressman ROHRABACHER.
    The confidential witness said, "No, it was very light purple,
    almost identical color of the wine cooler."
    I said, "So you don't think it was blood?"
    He said, "I do not think it was blood. In the very center of --
    it looked like he had thrown up on his right shoulder. In the very
    center there was one small speck area, probably no larger than a silver
    dollar that was black, that could have been blood in the very center of
    The reason I'm skipping through is there is a lot of repetition
    here because we kept asking the questions over to make sure that we had
    it correct.
    Congressman ROHRABACHER said, "Hold on. Let's make this point
    very clear. The FBI, when they were talking to you and when they kept
    going on, this question referred to the palm being up and the gun being
    underneath the palm?"
    The confidential witness says, "He, the FBI agent, demonstrated
    with his hand like this with his palm up."
    And he showed the palm to us like this and said that the
    trigger guard was on the thumb and the gun could have been obscured
    underneath the hand and that leaves might have been covering the thumb
    so he would not have seen the trigger guard.
    Congressman ROHRABACHER said, "So the question -- when they
    claim that you had in some way conceded that, well, maybe perhaps you
    didn't see it, if indeed it was below the palm, that was based on a
    description by the FBI that the palm was up and that the gun was
    underneath the back of the hand?"
    Then I said, "But it's not possible. Look at this."
    Because I had a gun and I put it on my thumb to show.
    Congressman ROHRABACHER said, "No. But that's not what this
    picture shows."
    The confidential witness said, "Exactly."
    Then I said, "But if the thumb is in there, look at this, you
    can't --"
    The Mr. ROHRABACHER said, "The more important part is that the
    FBI was describing something to him that was not --"
    The confidential witness said, "Exactly right."
    Then I asked him, "But in the report they say you believed that
    the palms were up, but you say there was no doubt?"
    He said, "I never said I believe it. I know it." That the
    palms were up.
    Congressman ROHRABACHER said, "Okay."
    Then the confidential witness says, "And he said the
    confidential witness believes it, and that's as straight as they
    can be."
    Mr. MICA. "But you never indicated --"
    He said, "Otherwise, those palms were up always."
    Congressman MICA. "And both palms?"
    Confidential witness. "Both palms, neatly at his side and
    they were just like that."
    Congressman MICA. "With nothing in them?"
    He said, "Nothing in the hands."
    Congressman ROHRABACHER. "And when you made the concession to
    the FBI after repeating that you didn't believe there was a gun in the
    hand, over and over again, when you finally made the concession it was
    based on a description by the FBI that the gun was found with -- the man
    was found with has palms up and that gun was underneath the palm?"
    He said, "That was all that would have been visible, was the
    trigger guard, would I have missed seeing a gun, with the dense
    foliage? If that being the case, it's possible I could have missed it."
    In other words, if it was only the trigger guard and if the
    gun was obscured under the hand. But when we put the gun in the hand
    in the position it was in in the picture and we rolled the hand over,
    the butt of the gun was up or the gun was lying across the palm of the
    hand. You could not have missed it. It would have been impossible.
    And I do not know why Fiske did not check that out. A blind man could
    see it. Yet everybody is accepting this report at face value, saying
    it is a great report, and forensic experts are perfect, everything else
    is perfect and it is so full of holes you could not put water in it. It
    is terrible. It makes me sick.

    See Page 2 at:

  4. #4
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Heart of Dixie
    Senate confirms Burwell as HHS secretary, new face of Obamacare

    By Tom Howell Jr.
    The Washington Times
    Thursday, June 5, 2014

    • FILE - This May 8, 2014 file photo shows Sylvia Mathews Burwell, ... more >

    The Senate on Thursday confirmed Sylvia Mathews Burwell as the next secretary of Health and Human Services in a vote that mixed bipartisan support for her abilities with deep concerns about Obamacare.

    Mrs. Burwell cruised to the helm of the massive agency in a 78 to 17 vote. She will replace Kathleen Sebelius, whose tenure at HHS was marked by the rocky web rollout of the federal health exchange last year and frequent sparring with congressional Republicans.

    As the successor, Mrs. Burwell has attracted both support and warnings from GOP lawmakers who say they are more concerned about the health care law than ever.

    “I think she’s done a pretty nice job of navigating that problem,” said Carl Tobias, a professor at the University of Richmond School of Law who studies executive appointments. “At least going in, there are promising signs.”

    By a 24-16 margin, more Republicans voted for Mrs. Burwell than against her.

    Some of Obamacare’s fiercest critics, including Sens. John Cornyn and Ted Cruz of Texas, were among those who voted “no.”
    Sen. Pat Roberts, Kansas Republican who caught flack from his GOP primary opponent for supporting Mrs. Sebelius in 2009, also voted against the nomination.

    All voting Democrats supported Mrs. Burwell’s nomination.

    Her bright start may quickly be overshadowed by Republicans’ concerns about the law.

    Millions of Obamacare customers might have received inaccurate taxpayer subsidies, according to news reports and government documents, while several states spent hundreds of millions on failed health exchanges.

    Sen. Orrin Hatch, Utah Republican, said he expects Mrs. Burwell to recoup federal grant money from those states.
    “If she’s confirmed, I hope with all my heart she will live up to this commitment, and I expect her to do so,” he said on the floor Thursday.

    Others took a harder line against the nominee.

    Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell on Thursday said Mrs. Burwell’s willingness to implement Obamacare “calls her policy judgment into question.”

    “Her embrace of this disastrous law is reason enough to oppose her confirmation,” Mr. McConnell said on the Senate floor. “So I’ll be voting against this nominee because I think we need to focus on repealing and replacing this law, not trying to do the impossible by pretending we can make it work.”

    Others bemoaned rising premiums under the law or a carve-out that lets federal lawmakers and staff retain an employer subsidy for their health care, even though they must get coverage from the Obamacare exchanges.

    “The Obamacare train wreck just keeps rolling on,” Sen. John Thune, South Dakota Republican, said.
    Yet Democrats alone had enough votes to approve the nominee.

    Sen. Ben Cardin, Maryland Democrat, thanked Mrs. Sebelius for her service and defended the health care law, arguing its customers will see doctors instead of flooding emergency rooms, among other benefits.

    “My colleagues say things that are just not true,” Mr. Cardin said. “Look at the facts.”

    Read more:
    Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

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