White House blames '3rd parties' for spam email from Axelrod

AT contributor Ethel Fenig blogged about the unsolicited email from Obama advisor David Axelrod pushing health care reform 3 days ago. The spam email surprised a lot of people who by all rights, shouldn't have been on any email list to get anything from the White House.

So how did so many receive the unsolicited spam? According to Fox News , 3rd party groups are being blamed by the White House:

The White House for the first time Sunday seemed to acknowledge that people across the country received unsolicited e-mails from the administration last week about health care reform, suggesting the problem is with third-party groups that placed the recipients' names on the distribution list.

In a written statement released exclusively to FOX News, White House spokesman Nick Shapiro said the White House hopes those who received the e-mails without signing up for them were not "inconvenienced" by the messages.

"The White House e-mail list is made up of e-mail addresses obtained solely through the White House Web site. The White House doesn't purchase, upload or merge from any other list, again, all e-mails come from the White House Web site as we have no interest in e-mailing anyone who does not want to receive an e-mail," the statement said. "If an individual received the e-mail because someone else or a group signed them up or forwarded the e-mail, we hope they were not too inconvenienced."

The White House previously would not answer questions on how the e-mails landed unsolicited in so many inboxes. White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs on Thursday said he couldn't give an answer until he saw who received the e-mails because he doesn't have "omnipotent clarity."

Methinks they doth protest too much. What 3rd party group would be in favor of health care reform and have so many opponents in their email list? And why was the Axelrod email sent via the generic White House account and not Axelrod's own account which would be subject to the records act that would require the White House to keep the distribution list?

It is tempting to connect the dots between the call to send in people's email addresses who said "fishy" things about Obama's health care proposal and this spam email from Axelrod. I wouldn't put it past them but there's no evidence - so far - that such was the case.

Still, it is discomfiting for opponents of the president to have their email address on a White House list. Given Obama's lack of respect for privacy, it is not really surprising.

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