Earlier today we listed some of the strong reaction to the arrest of Department of Homeland Security deputy press secretary Brian J. Doyle for attempting to arrange sexual relations with what he believed to be a 14-year-old female. Much of the reaction was critical of the Bush administration for not properly vetting one of their appointees. That assessment is dead wrong.
Brian Doyle is a career civil servant - NOT a political appointee. Government workers aren't "vetted." Doyle, as a DHS employee probably has a secret or top secret government clearance, but in DC that's hardly a unique commodity. Unless there is some prior history of pedophilia or sex crimes, the background searches and investigation wouldn't have alerted anyone to the possibility that he might get into the kind of trouble he's in now. The kind of hindsight analysis suggesting that the White House should have been "vetting" the civil service employees of their agencies, is laughable considering that the Clinton administration who dogged for years over the FBI files scandal (Filegate). It's also probably illegal...
So what do we know about is Brian Doyle? He's a former long-time Time magazine Washington bureau employee, a civil servant, and a registered Democrat. ***
The image above is a Wizbang created, graphical representation of actual public record voter registration data obtained (in person) this morning. You can see the raw image here, and it's all (somewhat) easily verifiable.
The fact that Brian Doyle is a longtime Democrat isn't really indicative of much of anything - his job was apolitical. His arrest in a Florida sting operation, despite the attempts of the left to paint it otherwise, is a personal failing - not one of the Bush administration.
*** - This line originally read, "He's a former Time magazine reporter, career civil servant, and a registered Democrat." It has been updated with more accurate information.
In case you're wondering how we got this information; a little background on Maryland's Election Law might help.
Registration records are "public records." - Registration records open to public inspection pursuant to subsection (a) of a former version of this section are clearly "public records," as defined in Maryland's Public Information Act, and not privileged or made confidential by law. 62 Op. Att'y Gen. 396 (1977).
Any member of public entitled to inspect and copy registration records. - In the absence of a "special order of the board" or a "reasonable regulation" by the board so providing, any member of the public is entitled to inspect and copy registration records of the board pursuant to subsection (a) of a former version of this section, without any of the restrictions set forth in former 3-22 of former Article 33 (now see 3-507 of this article). 62 Op. Att'y Gen. 396 (1977).
Update: We created the graphic so that you wouldn't have to decipher printout, but if you really want to examine the printout here's a key bit if information. If you look closely at the data on the form you'll notice that Montgomery county uses YY/MM/DD and YYYY/MM/DD as their date coding schemes. The 06/04/07 at the top of the form translates to April 7, 2006 - the day the public record report was run. Coincidentally April 7, 2006 is also Doyle's birthday (as you can verify in other news accounts from Friday), so on the day the computer printout was produced Doyle had turned 56. If you're really gung-ho you can go to Switchboard.com and lookup Brian Doyle in Silver Spring, MD. You'll notice there is only one resulting match for that search and it matches the address shown on the voter registration printout.