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Phillip Swarts

Phillip Swarts

Phillip Swarts is an investigative reporter for The Washington Times, covering fiscal waste, fraud and political ethics. He is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and previously worked as an investigative reporter for the Washington Guardian. Phillip can be reached at pswarts@washingtontimes.com.

Articles by Phillip Swarts

The most egregious examples of government waste, fraud or abuse from TWT staff. (Golden Hammer cropped logo)

Prison X-Ray machines fail to stop contraband

"Orange is the New Black" this isn't. In an attempt to stop the large amounts of contraband filtering their way into U.S. penitentiaries, the federal Bureau of Prisons decided to pick up some X-ray machines to improve security. But the machines have done little to cut down on smuggling. Published June 26, 2014

**FILE** Rep. Elijah Cummings, Maryland Democrat and ranking member on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee (Associated Press)

GOP accused of scuttling environmental regs at EPA hearing

A Congressional hearing Wednesday investigating problems at the Environmental Protection Agency quickly split along party lines with Democrats accusing Republicans of launching investigations simply to interfere with environmental regulation. Published June 25, 2014

EPA administrator Gina McCarthy told testified on Capitol Hill that she has never tried to obstruct oversight of her agency. (Associated Press)

McCarthy denies trying to obstruct oversight at EPA

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy told members of Congress at a Capitol Hill hearing Wednesday that she has never tried to obstruct oversight of her agency. Published June 25, 2014

FBI Director James Comey, backed by law enforcement personnel and prosecutors, addresses a news conference Tuesday, June 17, 2014 at the FBI Minneapolis field office in Brooklyn Center, Minn. Comey said the arrest Sunday of a Libyan militant in the deadly attack on Americans in Benghazi is a very good day for law enforcement and added that the FBI's No. 1 priority remains counterterrorism. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)

FBI sex trafficking sting nabs pimps, rescues 168 children

FBI Director James Comey announced Monday the arrests of 281 suspected pimps and the rescue of 168 children in a weeklong sting operation aimed at sex trafficking, organized crime’s fastest-growing enterprise. Published June 23, 2014

House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif. listens to testimony regarding social security and disability benefits, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, June 10, 2014. Four Social Security judges are facing accusations they rubber-stamped claims for disability benefits, approving billions of dollars in payments from the cash-strapped program. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

House panel probes problems at chemical safety board

The head of the federal U.S. Chemical Safety Board abused his position, using his power to intimidate opponents and promote friends — leaving the agency with few employees and a backlog of investigations, lawmakers said during an oversight hearing Thursday. Published June 19, 2014

The most egregious examples of government waste, fraud or abuse from TWT staff. (Golden Hammer cropped logo)

FEMA waste slows Katrina rebound

Nearly 10 years after Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast, some regions are still rebuilding. And nearly 10 years after the Federal Emergency Management Agency was accused of mismanaging aid for victims, investigators found the agency is still finding ways to waste taxpayers' money. Published June 19, 2014

** FILE ** Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy holds up a pen before signing new emission guidelines during an announcement of a plan to cut carbon dioxide emissions from power plants by 30 percent by 2030, Monday, June 2, 2014, at EPA headquarters in Washington.  (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

EPA watchdog says federal board blocking probe into retaliation

Officials at the U.S. Chemical Safety Board are deliberately trying to block an investigation into whether agency leaders mistreated whistleblowers, according to accusations in congressional testimony obtained by The Washington Times. Published June 19, 2014

 ** FILE ** North Dakota (SSN-784), the U.S. Navy's newest and most advanced nuclear attack submarine. (General Dynamics)

Nuclear overhaul cost estimates likely too low, watchdog says

The Energy and Defense Departments' 10-year, $263-billion estimate for overhauling the nation's nuclear weapons is likely too low and will cost taxpayers more money than originally estimated, a watchdog report says. Published June 18, 2014

State dedicates memorial for its killed law officers

Secretary of State John Kerry dedicated a memorial Thursday to those who have lost their lives overseas in support of the State Department's law enforcement and counter-narcotics efforts. Published June 12, 2014

House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa, is considering subpoenaing AWOL former EPA official Phillip North, who has ignored two notices to appear before the committee. (associated press)

EPA figure tied to Alaska mine controversy missing

Phillip North, a former official at the Environmental Protection Agency, was central to the controversy swirling around an Alaskan mining project that includes accusations of federal overreach. Now representatives on the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform want to question him. Published June 9, 2014