TAXPAYER WATCHDOG GROUP WANTS TO KNOW WHAT JANET RENO IS HIDING | Citizens Against Government Waste

TAXPAYER WATCHDOG GROUP WANTS TO KNOW WHAT JANET RENO IS HIDING

Press Release

For Immediate ReleaseContact: Jim Campi
June 1, 1999(202) 467-5300

 

Citizens Against Government Waste demands a full accounting of the cost of the Justice Department’s Microsoft anti-trust litigation

 

(Washington, D.C.) – Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW), America's largest taxpayer watchdog group, today sent a letter to Attorney General Janet Reno demanding an end to stonewall tactics by the Department of Justice (DOJ) regarding the ongoing anti-trust case against the Microsoft Corporation.  DOJ continues to hide the cost of its litigation from the American taxpayer.

During the past year, CAGW has made several Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests for a full accounting of the cost of DOJ’s Microsoft anti-trust litigation.  Despite the department’s legal obligation to respond to FOIA requests, DOJ repeatedly ignored CAGW’s reasonable requests for this information.  In the letter, CAGW President Thomas Schatz argues that "[t]he public interest demands a full financial accounting of DOJ's ongoing investigation of the software manufacturer." 

Schatz pointedly reminded Reno that a private law firm would have an ethical obligation to inform its client of costs being incurred in any litigation.  "DOJ has an obligation to keep its client -- the American taxpayer -- equally as informed."

In February, CAGW released an investigative report entitled The Federal Assault on High Tech.  In the report, the organization estimates that DOJ has already spent between $30 to $60 million in its questionable pursuit of the software manufacturer.  However, these estimates cannot be confirmed as long as DOJ continues to evade its legal responsibility to provide the public with information on how it is spending tax dollars.

CAGW is outraged that the nation's chief law enforcement agency would use such legally and ethically dubious tactics.  "The Department of Justice is charged with the sacred duty of upholding the laws of the land," Schatz remarked.  "It is a sad day indeed when those who are supposed to enforce the law are found to evade its spirit.  It is doubly disappointing that they have adopted stonewall tactics to deprive the American people of their right to know what their government is doing."

CAGW is a 600,000 member nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, mismanagement and abuse in government.

 

 

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