Update February 26, 2014- Senator Grassley convened an oversight hearing in the senate, and also testified before the House today. He issued this press release, “Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa today testified before a House committee on the Food and Drug Administration’s aggressive email monitoring of employees who were concerned about the safety of certain medical devices and released an investigative report on the monitoring with Rep. Darrell Issa, chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, which convened the hearing. Grassley made the following statement on FDA comments in media reports on the agency’s actions in the case.
“An FDA official is quoted as saying the agency did not target, intercept or prevent any communications to Congress. That’s false. The FDA may not have begun the email monitoring to try to capture privileged communications with attorneys, the Office of Special Counsel and Congress, but senior managers certainly knew early on that it was happening and they kept doing it. Emails with two Senate committees’ staff and a House member’s staff were all intercepted, stored, and summarized for senior managers by the FDA contractors conducting the monitoring. The FDA is trying to deny the facts rather than own up and take responsibility for what it did.” “