U.S. Investigations Services, the background check operation that vetted former Booz Allen & Hamilton whistleblower Edward Snowden, has hired Podesta Group to handle oversight and legislation related to government security clearance processes.
USIS, which handles about two-thirds of federal checks, is fighting to remain on Uncle Sam’s payroll.
A federal grand jury is probing whether it rushed background checks without the proper investigation, while the Justice Dept. has joined in a separate whistleblower case in which the company is charged with cutting corners. Congressional Republicans and Democrats have called for investigations into the Snowden mess.
USIS claims it has overhauled management and heightened security measures following the allegations. The federal Office of Personnel Management, which has oversight of the federal security clearance system, had given USIS a clean bill of health.
Well-connected Democrat Tony Podesta heads Team ISIS, which includes David Marin, ex-press secretary for Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA); Josh Holly, former communications director for the House Armed Services Committee; Andrew Kauders, ex-senior advisor to Sen. Bobby Menendez (D-NJ); Lauren Maddox, deputy secretary for former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, and Michael Quaranta, ex-chief of staff to Rep. Michael Castle (D-DE).
Sard Verbinnen & Co is advising USIS on the PR front.