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E-discovery Deadline Looms for White House

March 21, 2008

Loyal readers know we at Surety have been tracking the White House e-mail story closely for a while now and could probably guess that we were interested to see the latest development in the ongoing saga. Earlier this week, U.S. Magistrate Judge John Facciola gave the folks at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. three days to explain why they shouldn’t be forced to create and preserve copies of the allegedly “lost” e-mails from 2003-2005. Judge Facciola, a regular on this blog for his e-discovery expertise, ordered the White House to “show cause in writing … why it should not be ordered to create and preserve a forensic copy of any media that has been used or is being used by any former or current employee who was employed at any time between March 2003 and October 2005.”

The ruling forces the White House to prove that retrieving and preserving the e-mails would cause an “undue burden on staff and resources.” A spokesman for the Bush administration says the White House is reviewing the Court order and will respond appropriately. Facciola’s order gives the White House until the close of business today to answer. Stay tuned…

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