Notorious PR Firm That Reps Swift Boaters, Creationists, PhRMA Now Helping Fired IG

Gerald Walpin
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A heavy-hitting conservative public relations firm that flacked for Swift Boat Veterans for Truth and boasts an impressive array of right-wing clients is now helping Gerald Walpin, who was fired this summer by President Obama as the inspector general for AmeriCorps.

Creative Response Concepts Public Relations (CRC) is representing Walpin, a secretary who answered the phone at the company confirmed to TPMmuckraker today.

The list of CRC’s current and former clients reads like a who’s-who of the right-wing establishment, from the Republican National Committee to independent groups like Rick Scott’s Conservatives for Patients’ Rights and authors like David Freddoso, who wrote The Case Against Barack Obama: The Unlikely Rise and Unexamined Agenda of the Media’s Favorite Candidate. Other current and past clients of the Virginia-based firm include the creationist Discovery Institute, the original Swift Boaters who torpedoed John Kerry’s 2004 presidential bid, PhRMA, the Federalist Society, and the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

CRC’s president is Greg Mueller, former press secretary for Pat Buchanan’s presidential campaign.

The Los Angeles Times had reported Walpin was getting free PR help from a firm that represented the swift boat group.

Walpin was fired in June by the White House, which cited, among other reasons, his behavior at a May board meeting of the Corporation for National and Community Service. At that meeting, a lawyer for the White House has said, Walpin was “confused, disoriented, [and] unable to answer questions and exhibited other behavior that led the Board to question his capacity to serve.” Walpin and several GOP congressman charge that the true reason for his firing was his aggressive investigation of Kevin Johnson, the Sacramento mayor and Obama ally, for misuse of AmeriCorps funds, among other charges.

It’s not clear when CRC joined the effort, but Walpin has been on the conservative media circuit telling his story for months. His campaign has been characterized by public and strident attacks on President Obama. He spoke of the fight in David-and-Goliath terms in a June interview with Fox, portraying himself as a target of “the most powerful man in this country, with an army of aides.”

Meanwhile, an inquiry into the firing, prepared by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), argues that it was politicized and illegitimate, according to early reports.

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