Diary

Labor Dept. Refuses to Describe Investigation Into Tweet Calling Christians “Nazis”

The Department of Labor refuses to say whether it has asked any law enforcement agencies to review an allegation made by one of its employees that she had been “hacked” after her Twitter account was used to refer to Christians in Indiana as “Nazis.”

A tweet sent from Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) employee Elizabeth Ashack’s Twitter account on Sunday said, “People in the red states vote for nazis to govern, and then call themselves Christians, it will not end well for them. #BoycottIndiana.”

On Monday, Ashack’s account tweeted that she had been hacked the week before. “On Friday, March 24, both my work and home computer were hacked. An investigation is underway.”

However, that tweet was subsequently deleted as well, and a reference to her work for the Department of Labor’s BLS in her Twitter biography was also removed. The tweets were captured by the blog “SooperMexican.”

The initial tweet was a reference to Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), signed into law by Gov. Mike Pence last week. Homosexual activists, who say that the law could entitle business owners to reject them as customers, have staged protests and attempted to boycott Indiana businesses in the days to follow.

I contacted Megan Kindelan, Director of Public Affairs for the BLS, on Tuesday to ask whether law enforcement had been brought in as part of the alleged investigation. Kindelan declined to answer, saying only that the “situation is under review.”

“We’re trying to get this done quickly,” Kindelan said. “If you want to follow up in a few days, we could certainly have more information then.”

The incident has conjured memories of Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY), who claimed in 2011 that he had been the victim of a cyber-attack. It was found in the following days that he did not contact the FBI about the alleged attack, and his story subsequently collapsed under scrutiny.