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Executive Privilege Clash Over Missing E-mail?

Posted Apr 13, 2007 3:17 AM CDT
By Martha Neil

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Controversy continues over thousands of apparently deleted White House e-mails sought by Congress in connection with the recent firing of eight U.S. Attorneys. An executive privilege clash may be looming, the New York Times reports, particularly if the White House attempts to assert it over e-mails that were sent and received outside the official government computer system.

Meanwhile, there is disagreement among computer techies about whether deleted e-mails can be recovered. In the Times story, an expert says e-mail copies on computer hard drives may well have been overwritten with other data. But another expert interviewed by the Washington Post says e-mail copies likely can still be found on the hard drives of the computers used to send and receive them.

Deleting an e-mail from a computer's sent directory, the Post explains, is comparable "to a library that removes the entry for a book from its card catalog: 'The book is still on the shelf.'"

Further details about the ongoing battle over missing e-mail can be found in a blog post yesterday.


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