Blame Game Begins on Capitol Hill

Lehman Brothers execs tell Congress they didn't keep documents.

September 26, 2008— -- While the country waits anxiously for Congress and the White House to agree on a plan to prevent economic collapse, others on the hill are already searching for whom to blame.

House Oversight Committee Democrat Henry Waxman has already summoned the former chief of Lehman Brothers, the failed investment bank whose collapse stunned the nation last week, to testify under oath before his committee next week.

And late today, Waxman publicly blasted the former Wall Street titans for not cooperating with requests for documents and emails, saying Lehman's counsel has told the committee "although these documents did exist at one time, they were typically "discarded.""

"It is difficult to understand how Lehman Brothers is unable to produce a single internal document that went to or from the CEO's office over the past six months," the letter stated. "It is also difficult to understand why there is no log, file, or other record documenting where these internal documents went."

Lehman Brothers did not immediately return a call from ABC News seeking comment.

Separately, an audit requested by Republican Senator Charles Grassley was released Friday, offering a highly critical report of the Security and Exchange Commission's own leadership.

The audit said officials failed to act in the face of potential red flags or take action against Bear Stearns' "concentration of mortgage securities, high leverage, shortcomings of risk management in mortgage-backed securities and lack of compliance with the spirit of certain" international standards.

"It is indisputable that the CSE program failed to carry out its mission in its oversight of Bear Stearns," the report said. "The audit found that procedures and processes were not strictly adhered to."

Grassley responded Friday said the report is "another indictment of failed leadership."

All this comes before an agreement on how to save the nation's economy has even been settled.

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