During the 2022 elections, Jennifer-Ruth Green, the Republican candidate in Indiana’s 1st Congressional District, was locked in a tough contest with the incumbent progressive candidate Frank Mrvan. The district’s makeup is D+7, but Green was an attractive candidate who had aggressively raised money and campaigned.
About a month before the election, Politico reporter Adam Wren wrote a relatively favorable profile of Green. However, in typical Politico fashion, Wren had a bit of a poison pill to add.
Green’s mostly stellar military record took an unexpected hit in early 2010, according to military records. In an evaluation of her performance spanning from March 15, 2009 to Dec. 15, 2009, she received a “does not meet standards” rating in leadership skills, professional qualities, and judgment and decisions. The evaluation centered on “two instances of lacking judgment while deployed; handling your weapon and wandering away while at a [forward operating base].”
In the first case, she was given a letter of counseling for loading her weapon inside a military facility. The second more serious incident occurred in September, according to her military records, when she and a small group of officers visited the national training center. She left the group to climb into a cramped guard tower where Green says an Iraqi serviceman sexually assaulted her by grabbing her breast and exposing himself.
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She said she was advised not to report the assault by a staff sergeant, who was also a military equal opportunity representative. He told her that “if American leadership complained to Iraqi leadership, they would continue to see women as liabilities and limit their ability to serve … .”
The documents Wren was using came from Green’s official military personnel file. Those records are exempt from the Freedom of Information Act and only releasable to the veteran, the official next-of-kin, and the request has to be signed. No third party is allowed access to the files unless the veteran hands the records to them.
During the interview, Green says she pleaded with Wren not to publish the details of the sexual assault on her, but you know how that goes if you are conservative, particularly if you are a conservative black woman.
The USAF investigated and found the scapegoat.
Based on the preliminary findings of an investigation, it appears information from Jennifer-Ruth Green’s service record was released to a third party by a junior individual who didn’t follow proper procedures and obtain required consent
The problem didn’t stop there. Republican Representative Don Bacon, representing Nebraska-02, was recently informed that he was one of 11 people, including Republican Representative Zach Nunn of Iowa-03, who had legally protected information released. And it wasn’t released to just anyone.
USAF Letter to Representative Don Bacon by streiff on Scribd
What I found most interesting was the way this two-star burned down Payton and his company. He knew when he signed this that the letter was going to be made public. This is a man that is really torqued.
We don’t know who the other eight people were, but a possible pattern is developing.
Air Force spokesperson Ann Stefanek said “virtually all” of the 11 unapproved releases were made to the same third party “who represented himself as a background investigator seeking service records for employment purposes.”
The person making the request is named Andrew Payton, who works for a Democrat opposition research group located in Baltimore called Due Diligence Group LLC. Apparently, Payton is something of a whiz at getting around FOIA and, it seems, Privacy Act restrictions. Here he is giving advice on the subject. Unfortunately, Due Diligence LLC has locked its tweets, and Payton’s bio has vanished from its website.
As the DCCC paid Due Diligence $110,000 for its services last year, this isn’t much of a whodunit.
There is no evidence that anything Payton got on Bacon or Nunn was used in the campaign, but that isn’t terribly relevant. He requested their records under pretenses, and he did it several times. The complaints have been forwarded to Merrick Garland’s Department of Justice, but they could really give a flying f*** about what happens to Republican candidates or Supreme Court justices. They have a lot of seditious grannies to round up for jaywalking on January 6.
According to Politico, they have contacted over a dozen GOP House candidates, and none of them have received a similar letter from the Air Force.
The rules concerning the release of military personnel records are pretty straightforward. No one is allowed access to any personally identifiable information. A member of the public is allowed to get what is basically the DD-214 minus the social security number. There are no circumstances where some opposition research goober can get your efficiency reports, letters of reprimand, or other stuff.
Given the volume of requests for this information, squaring this with “gee, we f***ed up,” is damned hard. As Ian Fleming put in the mouth of James Bond in Goldfinger, “Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Thre times is enemy action.” If so, then eleven times sounds like a criminal conspiracy.
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