Issa fires aide over e-mail sharing

March 1, 2011 at 6:00 PM
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WASHINGTON, March 1 (UPI) -- A top Republican in the U.S. House says he has fired a spokesman for allegedly sharing some of the congressman's e-mails to reporters with The New York Times.

Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, dismissed Kurt Bardella, 27, one of his top spokesmen, for sharing the private e-mails with Mark Leibovich, a Times journalist working on a book about Washington, The Hill reported.

Issa issued a statement Tuesday saying an initial investigation following a report in Politico confirmed the alleged sharing of e-mails.

"Though limited, these actions were highly inappropriate," Issa said in the statement, "a basic breach of trust with the reporters it was his job to assist, and inconsistent with established communications office policies. As a consequence, his employment has been terminated."

The Hill said Issa and Bardella had worked closely together.

"Look, I think it not only hurts those of us who have worked with this very talented individual, but I think many of you that have worked with him -- it's clear he made an error in judgment and he's no longer with the committee and we put out a statement that is accurate 100 percent accurate as to what we know," Politico quoted Issa as telling reporters Tuesday afternoon.

Politico said Bardella had sought permission from Issa to participate in the book, but Issa said the extent of the cooperation sought was not clear to him.

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