Mar 2, 2010

Employees of Congresswoman Dahlkemper Campaigning “On Company Time”?

Written by Roberta Biros

I get plenty of traffic to my numerous blogs. I’m currently publishing my comments through several different forums and I receive traffic from all of them. The traffic patterns are always interesting to look at. I receive local traffic throughout Mercer County, I receive traffic from throughout Pennsylvania (Harrisburg, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Erie), and I receive steady traffic from Washington DC. I understand that there are plenty of people “keeping an eye” on bloggers (especially the conservative ones), and I’m entertained by their diligence. Today, however, I experienced something new, and I feel that it should be discussed publicly as it exemplifies a problem with “the system”.

The "Dahlkemper Post"

I published a blog post yesterday titled “Taking Bets: Will Congresswoman Kathy Dahlkemper Be a One Hit Wonder?”. It was a simple piece explaining why I think that Congresswoman Dahlkemper will lose her seat in Congress in 2010. As soon as the post was published it began to receive traffic nationwide. It also received quick comments through the supplied discussion forum.

I believe in free speech, and I like the comment feature because it gives everyone an opportunity to join in the conversation. I accept the criticisms that are shot my way and I publish all comments and respond accordingly.

This morning I received an interesting comment that attempted to criticize me personally, and also attempted to “prop up Mrs. Dahlkemper” using this public forum. The comment read as follows (or you may read the comment HERE):

We do think a lot of ourselves don't we? Much as i thought, you have no clue as to how one becomes a "Blue Dog". You have to be invited to join the group, you can't just announce it. Be asked to join means that you meet a certain criteria the group has. Perhaps research is not your strong suit.'

I also noticed you skipped over the the pro-life issue which you in your original is informed rant inferred that she was not. Again making things up will only fool the ignorant. The facts will make your bet the sucker bet.

By the way, I'll see your acquaintances and raise you mine that Dahlkemper has more personalty in her pinky than you do in your entire body. Do you think that your obvious disdain for 'them thar LIBrals' might have something to do with the fact that Dahlkemper did not fawn over you? Again, you do think a lot of yourselve don't you. Did you win by a landslide in your race? Oh that's right you lost.

I found the comment to be particularly angry, but still eager to "campaign" on behalf of Mrs. Dahlkemper. I was curious, and a quick glance at the origination of the published comment was startling.

My Findings?

It seems that a FEDERAL EMPLOYEE that works in a U.S. House of Representatives Office was posting the comment using US TAX PAYER DOLLARS on a computer and internet connection that were PAID FOR by the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT and US TAX PAYER DOLLARS.

The Details

The individual logged in from IP address A simple search on that IP address through on-line sources (in this case proved that the comment was posted on March 2nd, 2010 at 9:13:41 AM by a PC that is using a US House of Representatives computer and internet connection. The data regarding IP address is displayed below.

My experiences with these types of visits (and I have seen many during the past year and a half) have shown that the IP address may show up as Washington DC, but the physical connection itself can be anywhere. The same goes for Pennsylvania State Government connections that are labeled “Harrisburg PA”. The physical connection may well be in Mercer County.

The internet connection being used in this case is clearly paid for, installed on behalf of, and maintained by the Federal government via the U.S. House of Representatives in Washington DC, but the actual visit may have occurred from a PC in a different location (like Hermitage, PA, for instance). I’m sure that a Federal review of the IP address would probably provide additional information in this case.

My point is . . .

I understand that it may be the job of Federal employees to monitor blog activity regarding elected officials. Such monitoring might actually provide elected officials with the most accurate account of what concerned citizens are thinking, and that is a good thing. However, when a Federal employee makes use of the time and equipment that is paid for by the Federal government (and thus the tax payers) to grind a personal axe or to attempt to promote “their candidate” on MY DIME, I become VERY VERY CONCERNED.

Perhaps this incident should be investigated a bit.

Please feel free to share your thoughts HERE.

As always, just my opinion.
~Mercer County Conservatives


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