Former Rep. Anthony Weiner's wife Huma Abedin -- already under the microscope because of her husband's lewd behavior -- is facing tough questions from a senator concerned about the nature of her employment at the State Department.
Abedin, a longtime aide to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, worked for a little under a year as a "special government employee" for the State Department. During that period in 2012, she was also working as a consultant for a private firm called Teneo, giving private investors information about the government.
Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, last month sent the State Department a letter inquiring about Abedin's two jobs.
It has been reported that Ms. Abedin earned approximately $135,000 from the State Department while receiving $355,000 in consulting income for representing outside clients, as she remained a Federal employee and a trusted advisor to Secretary Clinton," Grassley wrote. "This raises important questions about whether her dual role was adequately disclosed to government officials who may have provided her information without realizing that she was being paid by private investors to gather information."
Grassley asked the State Department and Abedin to respond to 17 questions, as well as a request for all documents relating to communications between the State Department and Teneo, or clients represented by Teneo. The State Department and Abedin responded, giving the specific dates of her employment and confirming that she read State Department ethics guidelines before becoming a "special government employee." They also explained that Abedin, as a State Department employee, "advised" Clinton and supervised the operations of her travel and schedule.
Nevertheless, Grassley said in a statement Friday that neither the State Department nor Abedin has handed over any of the documents he requested.
"The purpose of my inquiry is to shed light on whether the program is being used as intended, not just by Ms. Abedin, but more broadly, as well," he said. "The State Department and Ms. Abedin should be willing to show the documents involved in administering the program to demonstrate good stewardship of tax dollars and the public interest... Putting up a stone wall raises a lot more questions about how the program is being used than it answers."