A former Department of Energy (DOE) photographer Simon Edelman made public photos that showed that then-Secretary Rick Perry was crafting U.S. energy policy to fulfill coal baron Robert Murray’s “wish list”. Mr. Edelman published his photos – which show the two men hugging and discussing an “action plan” for overhauling federal energy regulations — when Perry publicly claimed he did not have a relationship with Murray. He was illegally fired and ordered to destroy the photographs.
Whistleblower Aid filed Mr. Edelman’s complaint with the US Office of Special Counsel, alleging that he was fired from the DOE for sharing “evidence of criminal corruption, obstruction of justice, and ethics violations” with the press.
As a direct result of Mr. Edelman’s disclosures, Perry’s proposed rule before the Federal Energy Regulatory Committee, needlessly subsidizing the coal industry, was voted down unanimously.
“…[T]here’s a great organization called Whistleblower Aid who’s there to protect people who want to expose law breaking without breaking the law. And they helped me out pro bono and they’re there for anybody else who wants to speak up and is afraid to. And this isn’t just a government issue, this is a private sector issue, too. If you see wrongdoing in any sector, you should feel free to speak up because you have the right to do so and there’s protections that can do that.” – Simon Edelman