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The Weldon Beat: Deep Cover at the DOD

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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FRIENDLY SOURCE Weldon Curt Weldon (R-PA) is all about helping people. Currently under federal investigation for aiding his daughter's efforts to score million-dollar contracts from Russian energy companies, the vice chairman of the House Armed Services Committee is also known to help reporters—most recently by inviting them to work undercover in his congressional office.

Last month, sources say the congressman offered a number of lucky journos what he pitched as the ultimate insider's view of his crusade against Able Danger, the FBI "data-mining" op that Weldon says identified Mohamed Atta but failed to nab him before 9/11. In exchange for discretion, we're told, Weldon would allow them to pose as his aides so that they could sit in on meetings with Department of Defense officials and witness their stonewalling firsthand. Because what's a few national security secrets between friends, right?

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