Saturday, April 29, 2006

You can resign, but you can't hide.

Sept 24, 2005:

Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Lester M. Crawford announced his resignation yesterday, just two months after he was confirmed for the job. His e-mail notice to the FDA staff gave no reason for his surprise decision to step down...

Crawford, an affable Georgian who has worked at the agency on four occasions over 30 years, explained his departure yesterday by saying: "After three and a half years as Deputy Commissioner, Acting Commissioner and, finally, as Commissioner, it is time at the age of 67, to step aside."

A spokeswoman for Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt, who helped guide Crawford through his nomination, said Leavitt accepted the resignation "with sadness." Asked why Crawford had resigned, HHS spokeswoman Christina Pearson said she could not discuss a "personnel matter."

Not so fast, dude:

WASHINGTON, April 28 — Dr. Lester M. Crawford, the former commissioner of food and drugs, is under criminal investigation by a federal grand jury over accusations of financial improprieties and false statements to Congress, his lawyer said Friday...

Dr. Crawford resigned in September, fewer than three months after the Senate confirmed him. He said then that it was time for someone else to lead the agency.

The next month, financial disclosure forms released by the Department of Health and Human Services showed that in 2004 either Dr. Crawford or his wife, Catherine, had sold shares in companies regulated by the agency when he was its deputy commissioner and acting commissioner. He has since joined a Washington lobbying firm, Policy Directions Inc.

And the Grand Old Police Blotter claims another victim. God, but I love those conservative, family values.

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