by Chris Horner
As Appearing in the Washington Examiner

Text messages sent on a private telephone between Maureen McDonnell, wife of Bob McDonnell, and businessman Johnnie Williams are key evidence in the corruption trial of the formerVirginia governor, according to the Washington Post.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s aides also produced text messages in the “Bridgegate” investigation, again using private telephones.

Just like email, text messages can be preserved and produced. Federal employees are required to preserve text messages concerning official business.

But it appears they often aren’t. Will there be any consequences for this systematic lawbreaking?

As we recently learned in the IRS affair, federal agencies are destroying their text messages.

Coincidentally, political appointees and political activists in career civil service positions in the federal government are increasingly turning to texting just as the watchdogs using the Freedom of Information Act and congressional investigators are more frequently exposing improper activity against the taxpayer.

It was in this context that I recently received a Friday afternoon document production under a FOIA lawsuit I and colleagues at the Competitive Enterprise Institute filed seeking nothing but text messages.

Our first such suit was for Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy’s texts generated while leading President Obama’s “war on coal.”

Read more.