Republican leaders on a House panel are requesting that the U.S. Department of Labor turn over all records involving a $495,000 contract funded through President Obamaâ€™s stimulus program that paid for a barrage of ads on White House-friendly cable programs touting its â€œgreen jobsâ€ initiative.
The 2009 contract with McNeely Pigott & Fox Public Relations led to more than 100 commercials on cable news programs on MSNBC hosted by Rachel Maddow and Keith Olbermann to increase awareness about the Job Corps programâ€™s training in environmentally friendly industries.
In an Aug. 24 letter to Department of Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, House Committee on Education and the Workforce Chairman John Kline, R-Minn., and Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training Chairwoman Virginia Fox, R-N.C., requested documents, communications and information on the taxpayer-funded ad campaign.
â€œDespite the fact that these funds were made available as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act â€“ legislation President Obama said was critical for immediate job creation â€“ an examination of public records show that the contract that resulted in the advertisements on MSNBC created no jobs,â€ the letter reads. â€œUpon further review of public records, we have found that DOL, since 2009, spent almost $2 million on public relations services from MP&F, resulting in the creation of one job in the last reported quarter.â€
A call seeking comment from Labor Department officials was not immediately returned Friday.
Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, who sits on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, told FoxNews.com last week that the contract didnâ€™t â€œpass the basic sniff test.â€
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