The White House search for a replacement Attorney General is said to be Fast and Furious.
A former aide to Senator Chuck Schumer who is now working for the Justice Department call what he thought were members of Congressman Elijah Cummings staff to ask them to leak information to support administration spin of the IRS debacle. Imagine the fun that ensued when it turned out that had really dialed the staff of oversight committee chairman, Congressman Darrell Issa.
In a letter to Attorney General Holder, Issa said he is “disturbed” by the “apparently longstanding collaboration between the Obama administration and Ranking Member Cummings’ staff to obfuscate and prejudice the Committee’s work through under-the-table coordination.”
While I was researching cases to cite as authorities in a motion to dismiss that I’ve been writing this weekend, I found a useful case that lists Eric Holder as one of the parties. It turns out be a case where he came out ahead.
The Attorney General has taken a real drubbing in the Supreme Court. In a piece in the NY Post John Fund and Hans A. von Spakovsky point out that if Holder were a baseball player, he’d have been benched or cut from the team a long time ago. Holder not only loses cases in the Supreme Court, but he’s lost many 9-0.
Holder and Obama have argued that we as Americans don’t have the right to free speech, the right to privacy, the right to due process or the freedom of religion.
Thankfully, the Supreme Court has become the last defense for those who still believe in those rights.
Read the whole thing.
Allahpundit writes about the “news” that Eric Holder’s signature on the warrants for Fox News reporter James Rosen’s emails was not pro forma. The AG was deeply involved. And the President has ordered the AG to investigate the matter.
Imagine how dismayed Eric Holder will be when he finds out what Eric Holder’s done.
Ace is also on the case too. He suspects an interesting motive for the prolonged intrusion into Mr. Rosen’s communications, a loyalty investigation
Do you see what’s going on there? Not only do they want to see which of Obama’s people are disloyal in the actual case, they also want to keep secretly reading a private citizen’s email for years in order to find other sources of leaks in other matters.
I think so, Brain … but Eric Holder wearing orange? Is that really a good color choice for him?
American Glob reports that Government issued photo ID was required for reporters to cover a speech to the NAACP by Eric Holder on the evils of voter ID laws.
If the poll published by CNN is to be believed, the public isn’t buying the Obama Administration’s spin on the Fast and Furious subpoena and the Congressional contempt citation against Eric Holder. (H/T, Ed Morrissey)
It seems that we common folk naively believe that government officials are supposed to obey the law just as we have to. If the poll is accurate, then it would seem that the brouhaha is causing heartburn among a couple of key Obama constituencies–young people and low-income voters.
Is it November yet?
Strike One: The revised GDP figures for the economy stayed stuck at an annual rate of 1.9 percent for the first quarter of 2012. What that actually means is that the economy grew about 0.47 percent during that quarter, a rate too low to absorb the increased population of work force age persons and much too low to provide jobs for the already unemployed.
Expect Strike Two just after 10 am ET.
UPDATE–The Supreme Court throws one outside the strike zone! Strike 1, Ball 1
UPDATE 2–The Hose holds Eric Holder in contempt. Strike 2!
First, the Supreme Court will hand down its decisions in the Obamacare cases. I’m still betting that the whole law will go down.
Next, the House will hold the Contempt of Congress vote on Eric Holder. I’m betting he will be held in contempt.
A one-two punch. It will be entertaining to watch the White House and Main Stream Media spin machine tomorrow.
… explained so even Nancy Pelosi should be able to understand it. Laws aren’t just for the proles, Mrs. Pelosi.
The Obama administration is clearly worried (panicked?) concerning the contents of the documents Eric Holder refuses to turn over to Congress. Citing presidential executive privilege for the working papers of much lower level bureaucrats strikes me as foolish–unless there is something in them addressed directly to the President or written by him.
In any event, the story will now explode. It will move from being covered mostly by the right half of the blogosphere out to more main stream media other than CBS. It may take a while, but whatever they want to hid will now come out. Perhaps the folks who have compared Barack Obama to Richard Nixon are right. I wonder; what will be this administration’s equivalent of the 18-minute gap?
UPDATE–As Al Gore would say, there is controlling legal authority on the question of executive privilege. The case is United States v. Nixon in which the Supreme Court essentially limited the privilege to communication directly to or from the President. Is there something the documents with Barack Obama’s name on it? Or is he challenging the Supreme Court’s 1974 ruling? And is he forgetting how as a Senator he derided George W. Bush’s claim of the privilege in 2007? Inquiring minds want to know.
UPDATE 2–Even MSNBC has to cover the story now. Epic narrative fail!
UPDATE 3–(H/T, Charlie Spierling)
The President is not the Attorney General’s client; the people are.
–Senator Barack Obama, 2005
UPDATE 4–Even Kevin Drum at Mother Jones has taken notice. And not favorably.
Today, the White House asserted executive privilege to justify withholding the documents. Is this legitimate? It might be, but if the documents are truly covered by executive privilege, it’s a little hard to believe that Holder was willing to let the committee “review” them yesterday. Something doesn’t add up.
UPDATE 5 –Michael Walsh writes this over at The Corner:
But one thing is already clear: by asserting executive privilege, Obama has now forced F&F into the mainstream media, which has been doing its damnedest to block this story from the public. Those days are now over. Let the Nixon administration nostalgia now begin; at least no one died in Watergate.
It seems that the meeting between Rep. Issa and AG Holder didn’t go well.
It may be safer for Holder under the President’s bus that in Rep. Issa’s sights.
While speaking on CBS this morning, David Axelrod flatly contradicted Eric Holder’s testimony to Congress on Thursday concerning political advice to the AG.
If I were the Attorney General, I wonder whether the White House planned for me to be on the bus or under it. He’s not really part of the White House/Chicago
Eric Holder, who Weasel Zippers refers to as “galactically stupid and irremediably corrupt,” said yesterday that he didn’t know that persons entering a U. S. Courthouse are required to show photo ID. When the AG acted as if photo ID isn’t required at most federal facilities, Rep. Dan Lungren replied, “I haven’t tried that with TSA. That doesn’t work very well.”
I work as a contractor at a federal government facility. Don’t try to come it there without photo ID.
The DoJ says that the video of a young white man being offered Eric Holder’s ballot for the DC primary is no big deal. It’s just “manufactured” fraud.
Howard Portnoy notes the case of 2,800 dead people voting in Minnesota in 2008. Project Veritas has published video of the dead voting in New Hampshire during this primary cycle. The DoJ hasn’t comment on these cases yet.
Somehow, I doubt they will. After all, the AG’s boss got his political education in a town where the principal civic monument is rumored to be the Tomb of the Unregistered Voter.
Election Judge: If you’re a voter, where’s your ID?
“Voter”: ID? We ain’t got no ID. We don’t need no ID! I don’t have to show you any stinkin’ ID!
I wonder; how many times did “Eric Holder” vote in the DC primary last week? Watch the video at the link. And, yes, that’s a young, white guy being offered the ballot of a well-known, middle-aged, black public official.
UPDATE 2–John Fund at NRO uses the Fake Eric Holder video as a springboard for an analysis of the voter ID question. In discussing alleged suppression of minority voting, he notes this:
Scandals such as that one helped convince 62 percent of Mississippi’s voters to approve a photo-ID law last November. The measure passed in a clear majority of counties that are majority-black. As with other ID laws, a free state-issued photo ID is available to anyone who says they can’t afford one.
… passed in a clear majority of counties that are majority-black. Hmmmm.
The Daily Caller has a story up titled Holder in 1995: ‘Really brainwash people’ to be anti-gun. Read it and follow the link to the C-Span video. (H/T, NRA—ILA)
At the end of the video, Holder suggests a hotline that folks could call to report gun-related crimes. What’s the number to call to report straw-purchased guns being smuggled to Mexico?
I wonder … Would it be better if the killings were done with guns smuggled out of Arizona instead of using drones?
UPDATE–The AG’s cred slips a few more notches on Capitol Hill.
Eric Holder wants credit for stopping Operation Fast and Furious. OK, I’m willing to let him have it in proportion to his taking responsibility for the DoJ having run the program in the first place.
The Washington Examiner’s summary nails it:
Holder’s attitude before the committee yesterday could only be described as contemptuous. At one point, Rep. Raul Labrador read a dozen quotes from Holder over a period of more than a decade in which he had claimed his staff did not inform him about assorted matters. The attorney general disdainfully replied, “maybe this is the way you do things in Idaho or wherever you are from.” Labrador was born in Puerto Rico and represents an Idaho congressional district.
Rather than the country bumpkin Holder appears to consider him, Labrador is a lawyer and the former managing partner of a law firm. More important, he is an elected member of Congress tasked by the Constitution to ask whatever questions he deems appropriate in in a congressional oversight hearing probing executive branch law enforcement activities. As much as he clearly chafes under such oversight, Holder should be relieved of his duties.
UPDATE–Ed Morrissey asks whether the AG should walk the plank or be pushed. He cites part of Daily Caller interview with Rep. Trey Gowdy who doesn’t think that the votes are there for an impeachment.
UPDATE 2–While lurking about various MSM sites on the interwebs, I’ve found a few sites that feature AG Holder’s outrage or disgust at his character being called into question (ABC News, for example), but I’m a bit surprised at how few wagons are being circled around the AG. Many seem to be ready to move on. NPR, for instance, is running the AP wire story rather than coverage by their own reporter.
Hmmmm. Maybe that bus will be coming for Eric Holder after all.
In today’s edition of Morning Jolt (subscribe here) Jim Geraghty reports that Eric Holder intends to assert some sort of privilege that would allow him to keep his emails and other work products from the prying eyes of Congress. (H/T, Ed Morrissey)
Thus, the administration that took military action in Libya without any authorization from force from Congress, that appointed czars with policymaking authority without congressional confirmation, and that made “recess” appointments while Congress was not in recess is invoking executive privilege to cover how the Department of Justice reacted when Congress began asking about a gun-trafficking operation that got U.S. law enforcement officers murdered by Mexican drug cartels.
All from a president who railed against a runaway imperial presidency when George W. Bush sat in the office he currently occupies.
Ed Morrissey’s piece takes note of a memo circulating among Republicans in Congress that outlines further details of the ties between senior DoJ personnel and Operation Fast and Furious. It should be an interesting hearing today in Rep. Issa’s committee.
Mr. Morrissey notes that executive privilege lies with the President and communication in which he is personally involved. The only other privilege that I can think of that the AG might assert is attorney/client, but his client is the President–so any successful assertion of privilege would require the assumption of Presidential involvement. That turns Fast and Furious into a potential campaign issue.
UPDATE–PJ Media has a thorough fisking of the AG’s prepare testimony to the House committee.
UPDATE 2–The Arizona Republic (H/T, Shall Not Be Questioned) is carrying a story about Dennis Burke, a U. S. Attorney connected with Fast and Furious and a strong proponent of gun control, that tends to support the conspiracy theory that the whole operation was created in an effort to get new gun laws passed. Here’s the money quote from one of Mr. Burke’s emails:
It’s going to bring a lot of attention to straw purchasers of assault weapons. Some of these weapons bought by these clowns in Arizona have been directly traced to murders of elected officials in Mexico by the cartels, so Katie-bar-the-door when we unveil this baby.
Sebastian at Shall Not Be Questioned opines that Mr Burke should go to jail. A commenter at that site suggests a Mexican jail.
UPDATE 3–Among all the reporting on the AG’s testimony, this by Jim Geraghty perhaps best demonstrates how the Republicans will be able to make Eric Holder and Fast and Furious an issue. The video of the exchange between Mr. Holder and Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle shows a completely unrepentant, even arrogant, response from the AG. I am reminded of words spoken at another Congressional hearing many years ago:
… I think I have never really gauged your cruelty or your recklessness. …You’ve done enough. Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?
But this time those words should be directed to the witness.
From the Daily Caller:
A U.S. Justice Department source has told The Daily Caller that at least two DOJ prosecutors accepted cash bribes from allegedly corrupt finance executives who were indicted under court seal within the past 13 months, but never arrested or prosecuted.
The sitting governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands, his attorney general and an unspecified number of Virgin Islands legislators also accepted bribes, the source said, adding that U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is aware prosecutors and elected officials were bribed and otherwise compromised, but has not held anyone accountable.
Fast and Furious may be just the tip of a very large iceberg.