WASHINGTON (CNN) - A Republican congressman wants to know more about why the Obama administration set up a special e-mail address to collect information about fishy claims made by opponents of heath care reform - and why some people received e-mails from the White House without ever signing up for them.
Earlier this month, as it began to launch an aggressive counter-offensive against what it called "disinformation" about the the reform legislation, the White House sent out a mass e-mail - which it hoped would go viral - attempting to debunk "the lies and distortions" about health care. The administration also set up an e-mail address and asked the public to submit tips about any "fishy" claims about health care circulating in e-mails and on the Internet.
But both efforts quickly came under fire. The mass e-mail was received by individuals who said they never signed up to receive White House e-mail updates. The online tip box was criticized by Republicans who accused the administration of monitoring Americans. On Monday, the administration shut down the online tip box and has changed the procedures for signing up for official e-mail updates.
But California Rep. Darrell Issa - the Ranking Member on the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform - wants more answers. Issa wrote to White House counsel Greg Craig on Monday looking for answers on why the White House set up the e-mail address and what it plans to do with the information it collected. He also asked if the data collected iS being archived in accordance with federal record-keeping laws.
Read: Issa's letter to Craig
Finally, Issa questioned if the White House confused its official e-mail distribution list with any political e-mail list, like the one for Organizing for America, Obama's post-campaign political operation.
A staff member for Rep. Issa said the Republican still wants the information mentioned in Monday's letter despite the changes in White House e-mail policy.
Issa isn't the only Republican to press the White House about its e-mail efforts: Texas Sen. John Cornyn wrote to the White House last week and suggested it was inappropriate for the Obama administration to ask for the public's help in keeping tabs on administration critics.
The White House did not respond to CNN's request for comment on Issa's request. Previously, the administration has denied that it was using the e-mail tip box to generate a list of Obama's critics.