Fast and Furious Goes Nuclear

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The Fast and Furious gunwalking scandal, largely downplayed by the mainstream media for months, can no long be contained. President Barack Obama granted an eleventh hour written request by his embattled Attorney General Eric Holder and invoked executive privilege, withholding documents and communications by administration officials that occurred after Feb. 4, 2011. Those communications have been subpoenaed by House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA), who had warned Mr. Holder that he would be held in contempt of Congress for refusing to turn them over. On Wednesday, Issa made good on his promise. The Committee approved a resolution 23-17 along party lines, holding the Attorney General in contempt of Congress. The ruling will now go to the full House for a vote.

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) issued an immediate statement:

Despite being given multiple opportunities to provide the documents necessary for Congress’ investigation into Fast and Furious, Attorney General Holder continues to stonewall. Today, the Administration took the extraordinary step of exerting executive privilege over documents that the Attorney General had already agreed to provide to Congress. Fast and Furious was a reckless operation that led to the death of an American border agent, and the American people deserve to know the facts to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again. While we had hoped it would not come to this, unless the Attorney General reevaluates his choice and supplies the promised documents, the House will vote to hold him in contempt next week. If, however, Attorney General Holder produces these documents prior to the scheduled vote, we will give the Oversight Committee an opportunity to review in hopes of resolving this issue.

For more than a year, Mr. Issa gave Mr. Holder every opportunity to provide the information. Yet a 20-minute meeting Tuesday night produced nothing in the way of an agreement. Mr. Holder reportedly insisted he would be willing to brief the committee on documents detailing what the Justice Department knew about the program. He also agreed to turn over some of the additional documents Issa wanted. In return Mr. Issa would have to drop the contempt effort. Issa didn’t bite, saying he wanted to see the documents before deciding whether or not to proceed with the contempt vote.

Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) and other Democrats claimed Mr. Holder never made such a demand, further contending that the AG had come to the meeting in “good faith” in the attempt to reach an agreement. Issa counter that Mr. Holder briefed the committee instead of providing the requested documents. Issa told Fox News that Holder didn’t provide “anything in writing.”

February 4th is critical because a letter written by the Justice Department (DOJ) on that date contended that there had never been a gunwalking program, an assertion the DOJ was forced to withdraw in November when it didn’t square with the facts in the case. Yesterday, the DOJ was forced to make a second retraction regarding Mr. Holder’s claim in a hearing last week that his Bush administration predecessor, Attorney General Michael Mukasey, had been briefed about a gunwalking program called Operation Wide Receiver. The DOJ is now saying Mr. Holder “inadvertently” made that claim to the Committee. That Mr. Holder “inadvertently” made it while under oath is apparently irrelevant

Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA) the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee who started the Fast and Furious investigation eighteen months ago, minced no words regarding these so-called errors. “In his eagerness to blame the previous administration, Attorney General Holder got his facts wrong,” Grassley wrote. “And his tactic didn’t bring us any closer to understanding how a bad policy evolved and continued. Bad policy is bad policy, regardless of how many administrations carried it out. Ironically, the only document produced yesterday by the Department appears to show that senior officials in the Attorney General’s own Department were strategizing about how to keep gunwalking in both Wide Receiver and Fast and Furious under wraps.”

Under wraps has now taken on a whole new meaning. Yesterday morning Deputy Attorney General James Cole sent a letter to Mr. Issa. “I write now to inform you that the President has asserted executive privilege over the relevant post-February 4, 2011, documents,” it read. Thus, for the time being, the release of the subpoenaed documents has been effectively prevented by the White House.

Yet the exercise of executive privilege also brings a whole new dimension to the scandal. The Supreme Court has concluded that executive privilege pertains to communications directly with the president. Thus, its invocation inexorably leads to one of two conclusions: either the president himself is involved with Fast and Furious, or his administration intends to challenge the scope of 1974 Supreme Court decision limiting executive power.

Sen. Grassley illuminated that reality. “The assertion of executive privilege raises monumental questions,” he contended. “How can the president assert executive privilege if there was no White House involvement? How can the president exert executive privilege over documents he’s supposedly never seen? Is something very big being hidden to go to this extreme? The contempt citation is an important procedural mechanism in our system of checks and balances,” he added.

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  • Ken

    This whole affair stinks to the core!! Holder is such hack and syncophant!!

  • Stephan

    I have the strange feeling that the media will call this a fishing expedition.

    • Looking4Sanity

      May be, but wait until they see the whopper we pull out of this swamp! No one ever believes there's a world record just under the water until someone flops it on the scales and proves it!

    • wsk

      6-26-2012- Stephan- you just may be a prophet!

  • Larry

    This is what Holder has been stalling about all along. Either he produced the documents that explicity implicated the obamessiah, or they had to go for the executive privilege line.

    Obviously the criminal behaviour doesn't just go close to the Oval Office as we already know, it goes right inside and camps at the presidential desk.

    • Supreme_Galooty

      It probably also goes right to the two most recently appointed Supreme Court justices. I would be most surprised if it doesn't.

  • oldtimer

    Documents can be altered, there has been enough time to do that. I wouldn't trust anything handed over now.

    • wsk

      My guess is that Issa has already seen the documents in question, but now wants to make open to public scrutiny. However, I don't doubt that the Republicans will screw this up, too!

  • kafir4life

    What those on the right are failing to see is that Brian Terry was a known polluter and enemy of the EPA. During a regular day, "Agent" Terry was constantly producing a dangerous greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide. Every time he exhaled, he added to the scourge of global warming. When President Stinky (-bo) and his boy Eric had him killed, they did so for the environment. In fact, because of Stinks and Eric, the carbon footprint of hundreds of former CO2 producers has been reduced to zero. And for this, the right wants to crucify them!!
    Leave Stinky alone, you racists! Eric even noticed that you don't like him or Stinks just because they're Black. It must be so.

  • http://www.authors.iuniversepublisher.com/ iUniverse

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    • Chiggles

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  • mmercier

    It must be clearly eninciated to the general public that ff was a concerted media/administration attempt to create the perception of a situation that would allow the destruction of the second ammendment.

    In short… an act of treason.

    • mmercier

      Enunciated…

  • Marco

    There is only one thing people need to know about Operation Fast & Furious. Only one thing conservative pundits should be discussing. Only one group the need to be talking to. And it’s not white conservatives who get misty eyed when they hear about border patrol agents dying in the service of their country.

    The message should be simple: 0bama armed drug cartels that killed tens of thousands of Mexicans. It is the Hispanic Holocaust. 0bama has been complicit in the War Against Latinos.

    • Bert

      Right on! I wish that the Republicans would make this point loud and clear and frequently!

    • wsk

      Maybe the Mexican Government will charge the man-child messiah with a hate crime or a crime against humanity.

  • http://www.maghrebchristians.com Youssef

    Egypt’s generals have set political rules that could keep the army in power for years, one of their senior Islamist opponents warned on Wednesday, but the Muslim Brotherhood will not fight back in the way that plunged Algeria into bloody civil war.

    Read more: http://www.maghrebchristians.com/2012/06/21/egypt

    Youssef

    • mmercier

      Egypt is a long way from Mexico. The comon theme relating the two failed states is the reality that both will end up under military rule.

  • mmercier

    Apology for the profanity.

  • mmercier

    Take two.

    Some clever law firm should send a swarm of vultures into _Mexico and represent every victim of one of these guns in US courts re wrongful death suits against every person who can be linked to this operation.

    Mexico should also raise cain in the un.

    None of this will happen… but one can dream.

    • pagegl

      Apparently Mexico has issued subpoenas for everyone involved with selling guns to the cartels. Holder's derriere could end up in a Mexican prison if the Mexican government were to find him guilty of aiding the cartels.

  • David

    Why would an ambitious politician like Holder withhold documents that would only implicate the "low hanging fruit"?
    Why would Obama assert "executive privilege" at this late hour to protect the "low hanging fruit"?
    Answer: Obama and Holder are in this scandal up to their eyeballs. There is no "low hanging fruit". Just them.

    • Vermont Yid

      David – Great post! Clear, concise, to the point.

    • mlcblog

      That is my suspicion as well.

  • davarino

    sic em congress. There is smoke, fire, guilt, treason. Gettem

    • fiddler

      Then we need to laugh at those such as Chris Matthews who will "fall on their sword" for them.

  • StephenD

    I don't doubt the Clinton's hand is in this as well. How many attempts to point at the weapons in Mexico as having come from America when it was later learned only 17% were from here. I guess they figured that is an easy fix…. Now, it's blowing up in their faces. The idea of linking this to the also foolish operation of the Bush Administration is a stretch in every way. Bush’s' program had tracking devices in them and were followed (operation Gun Runner). Fast and Furious was just that Fast; out the door – no questions asked. Furious; like blazing gun battles of the old west – with innocent bodies left in its wake. If this was not discovered by now we'd be hearing from Hillary who would be backed up by Obama on the call to amend the 2cd Amendment which was the ultimate goal to begin with.

  • Jimi Belton

    UNDER THE RADAR…………Remember the term out of 0samb0s lying mouth…..will someone ask this supplanter what did he mean by that phrase, and is he and Holder and Clinton still working "under the radar" to destroy our 2nd amendment rights….This is the most evil and dishonest Adm. ever in the history of our nation….Heaven help us…

  • tagalog

    On Feb. 4, 2011, the Attorney General of the United States causes a letter to be written that lies about the existence of the Fast and Furious project. The Attorney General of the United States then lies to lawmakers about briefing a Bush administration figure about F & F. When documents are requested by Congress according to long-established procedures, the Attorney General of the United States refuses to release those documents, and the President asserts a claim of executive privilege.

    What kind of leaders have we got running this country?

    • Looking4Sanity

      "What kind of leaders have we got running this country?"

      After three years of treachery, treason and illegal action, I would think the answer was obvious.

  • Looking4Sanity

    I find it impossible to believe that Obama is going to put his fate in the hands of a group of judges that he publicly humiliated on the world stage less than two years ago!

    And we're supposed to believe this is the smartest guy on the planet!? Puh-leeze!

    He's certainly the most arrogant man-child on the planet, but that isn't going to save him either.

  • Steve Chavez

    IS FAST AND FURIOUS TIED TO THE COLUMBUS, NEW MEXICO GUN-RUNNING BY ITS MAYOR, POLICE CHIEF AND NINE OTHER PEOPLE?

    The Mayor and Police Chief are already sitting in prison BECAUSE OF THEIR PLEAS OF GUILTY. WHY DID THEY PLED GUILTY??? BECAUSE MEXICO IS DEMANDING THE EXTRADITION OF AND AND ALL U..S OFFICIALS involved in transporting guns to Mexico and these Columbus officials would rather sit a U.S. prison than a Mexican one.

    SO, CAN MEXICO EXTRADITE HOLDER AND OBAMA??? SURE! We extradite drug lords, public officials from all over the world and we even INVADED PANAMA TO GET MANUEL NORIEGA! "NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW." My suspicion is that when Committee members went to Mexico to meet with their officials, they heard the Mexican's demanding answers and trials in THE U.S. AND MEXICO of those involved.

    SEND HOLDER AND OBAMA TO MEXICO SO THEY CAN LIVE IN PRISON WITH THEIR AMIGOS!

    • Steve Chavez

      QUOTES FROM MEXICAN OFFICIALS DEMANDING EXTRADITION from a Google search.

      "While the investigation continues into the U.S. operation that helped send thousands of guns south of the border, Mexican lawmakers say they'll press for extradition and prosecution in Mexico of American officials who authorized and ran the operation.

      "I obviously feel violated. I feel my country's sovereignty was violated," Mexico Sen. Rene Arce Islas told Fox News. "They should be tried in the United States and the Mexican government should also demand that they also be tried in Mexico since the incidents took place here. There should be trials in both places."

      Arce is chairman of Mexico's Commission for National Security, a congressional panel similar to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee.

      His point of view is shared by many Mexican politicians, including Sen. Santiago Creel, a former Interior Minister and the likely presidential nominee next year of the National Action Party to succeed Felipe Calderone, also of PAN.
      "I think we should at least try to prove that what happened in Mexico must be sanctioned by Mexican laws and under our sovereignty," Creel told us. "What can't happen is that this now ends on an administrative sanction, or a resignation. No, no, no. Human lives were lost here. A decision was made to carry out an operation that brought very high risk to human lives."

  • Schlomotion

    I would like to just take this moment to remind the readers that in 2001, The Israel Lobby tried to murder our hero, House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA).

    • Vermont Yid

      You're such an a$$hole.

    • Chiggles

      The Jewish Defense League is hardly the "Israeli Lobby", Schmo.

    • Ghostwriter

      Why should we trust ANYTHING you say,Schlobrain? Your constant hatred of Jews makes ANYTHING you say suspect. But,you should have thought of that before you revealed your anti-semitism to the world,you disgusting slug.

    • Zionista

      hey all of you FPM fans who actually read shmo's hateful and BORING rants, I put $ in a fund for Israeli/Zionist causes each time I read one, so when the knuckle dragger opines, the fund grows!!!

    • UCSPanther

      Translation: I have no problem with a hideously corrupt attorney general who's actions indirectly led to the death of a DEA agent all for quest for one of the left's Holy Grails, Gun control, but love to go on and on about irrelevant conspiracy theories.

      • Schlomotion

        I do have a problem with Eric Holder. He belongs in prison. Nevertheless, there was that assassination attempt on Darrell Issa by angry pro-Israeli Jews.

        • Ghostwriter

          And I have a problem with a Jew hating creep like you. If you had even a shred of decency or humanity,you'd quit bashing Jewish people in general and Israel in particular. But I doubt you'll do that.

  • Tatersalad

    The video that the Barack Obama told Fox News to pull because they "don't like It"!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zi15OtKquD0

  • Willy Rho

    The core of the rotten apple is the goal of the Obama administration to flood Mexico with Documented American guns, especially "Assault Weapons" and then demand that the Second Amendment to the Bill of Rights be weakened, ignored or eliminated. Commies hate armed slaves, it is so hard to send them to FEMA concentration camps. You never see a Slave with a lethal weapon, especially an "Assault Rifle". Send the all to Blazes.

  • Asher

    This administration does not want the truth to come out about their ultimate goals to blame gun dealers in the U.S. for weapons going into Mexico that they themselves designed and set up…its clear they have alot to hide and keep out of the news until after the election….All parties use guns and want their 2nd amendment rights upheld…and will not stand for the disarment of the 2nd amendment! On a human level these monsters should come clean for the families of Brian Terry and Jaime Zapata. This investigation is no different than finding out why military personel died or were killed, we should all be outraged at this cover up for the sake of the brave heroes who served our country and for their families, they deserve the truth!

  • Dennis Metz

    why would anyone with a brain think that Holder and obummer wont get away with anything they can. remember slick willie had many murders and drug traffic out of arkansas covered up and he got off so you got a black man that can not be touched for fear of the race card
    what a joke