Magazine article Newsweek

Tomlinson: Horsing around at the Office?

Magazine article Newsweek

Tomlinson: Horsing around at the Office?

Article excerpt

Byline: Mark Hosenball

Congressional Democrats are weighing their next move in the wake of a State Department inspector-general report alleging that the politically connected chief of the board that oversees the government's foreign broadcast services misused government resources. Senate Dems could try to block Kenneth Y. Tomlinson's reappointment, though Tomlinson told NEWSWEEK that allegations that he hired a friend on a lucrative consulting contract and used government facilities to run a racehorse stable are the product of a political vendetta.

A former editor of the conservative Reader's Digest who led Voice of America under President Ronald Reagan, Tomlinson acknowledges he has worked closely with Karl Rove and other White House officials in his current position. Tomlinson was ousted as chair of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting following an investigation into complaints that he sought to monitor purported political bias in programming. He says the State Department's investigation of his conduct in his current job "was inspired by partisan divisions."

One key strand of the IG investigation focused on allegations that Tomlinson used his government office to operate a racehorse business. Two officials familiar with parts of an IG report that remain secret--who asked not to be named due to political sensitivities--say investigators found dozens of cases where Tomlinson used his government phone and e-mail for matters related to his horses (including two named Karzai and Massoud after Afghan politicians). …

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