Joseph E. Schmitz, former inspector general of the U.S. Department of Defense from 2002-05, said in an interview with Watchdog.org that while no political party has a monopoly on abuse, the current administration is "just blatantly lying — lying to American citizens, lying about people trying to redress grievances” and that the scandals that have plagued the Obama administration “start with dishonesty.”
Schmitz said the criticisms of the Obama administration on its handling of Benghazi are well-founded, maintaining that dishonesty is at the heart of the issue:
From my standpoint, whoever wrote those fallacious talking points that (then U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations) Susan Rice repeated to citizens in government, those blatantly dishonest talking points that were propagated by senior officials. And nobody has been held accountable.
Schmitz has also been highly critical of Obama for refusing to replace cabinet-level inspectors general, writing an op-ed piece for the Wall Street Journal in June 2013 that asked,
With so many scandals breaking in Washington, one may well ask: Where were all the inspectors general when these bad things — at the IRS, at Justice, and at State before, during and after Benghazi, for instance—were going on?
Schmitz provided his own answer, the “sad truth” that many of “the most important IGs mandated by Congress simply are not in place,” including IG positions at the departments of State, Labor, Interior, Defense and Homeland Security. As Watchdog reports, in May 2012, ten inspector general positions were unfilled, five of which were at cabinet-level agencies and four remaining vacant for years. President Obama took five years to appoint an IG as watchdog for the State Department.
Schmitz argued that this neglect to appoint IGs is emblematic of one of the biggest problems he sees with this administration: lack of leadership, appointing and holding accountable people “called on to make tough decisions.”
Schmitz resigned from his position as inspector general of Defense in 2005, amid accusation that he had stonewalled congressional inquiries into Bush administration officials, a charge he was cleared of by the President’s Council on Integrity and Efficiency in 2006.