Bloch Party

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Some more detail in this morning’s papers on that raid yesterday at the Office of Special Counsel that involved two dozen FBI agents serving subpoenas on 17 employees in a raid that lasted more than five hours. All indications remain that this is a probe focused on Special Counsel Scott Bloch, but Government Executive reports that the scope is surprising:

But OSC employees said the grand jury subpoenas seek a wide range of information that goes beyond Bloch’s deletion of computer files or treatment of agency employees.

Investigators have demanded all files on OSC’s investigation last year into allegations of improper political activity by Lurita Doan, the former head of the General Services Administration, who was forced to resign last week by the White House.

In addition, investigators demanded documents related to OSC’s investigation into allegations that Secretary of State Rice used federal resources to travel to campaign appearances supporting President Bush’s re-election in 2004. Bloch’s office closed the case, finding no violation by Rice.

Oh, and don’t forget the towels:

An official present during the raid yesterday said federal agents asked for access to computers and e-mail messages from Bloch and from the mid-level workers who received subpoenas. Investigators also sought credit card receipts, an agency employee said. Some staff members had complained that Bloch used agency funds to buy for his office restroom $400 hand towels decorated with a special OSC seal, according to another person familiar with the raid.

The towels were a legit perk, a spokesman told Justin at ABC:

“Scott, as a presidentially-appointed, Senate-confirmed member of the administration gets an allowance for things,” spokesman Jim Mitchell explained. “He paid about $300 for some towels that had the OSC seal on it. He took a couple home, which he paid for himself.”