By Bernie Becker - 05/18/11 03:09 PM EDT
Eric Schultz, a White House spokesman, responded to the lawmaker message by saying the administration was “working diligently to identify highly qualified candidates to fill these important posts.”
“The administration supports the work and commitment of all of the IG offices, including those currently being led by acting IGs, as they strive to ensure that taxpayers are getting the good government they deserve,” Schultz said in a statement.
The Wall Street Journal first reported on the congressional letter, which was dated Tuesday.
The Justice, State, Homeland Security, Labor and Housing and Urban Development departments are all currently without a permanent IG, as are the intelligence community and the Corporation for National and Community Service.
As the letter notes, eight of those vacancies have occurred since Obama took office in early 2009, while the State Department has been without a permanent IG for more than four years.
Mark Jones, the executive director of the Council of Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency, told The Hill that 73 federal IG positions were in CIGIE, with probably a few more not a part of it. In all, Jones said, just under half of IGs in his group are presidentially appointed.
Some of the lG slots mentioned in the letter have seen their share of controversy in recent years. Howard Krongard, for instance, left the state IG job more than four years ago after being criticized for standing in the way of investigations relating to Iraq.
This post was updated at 4:02 p.m.