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Gunrunner: Barack Obama invokes executive privilege as the Oversight Committee votes to hold Eric Holder in Contempt for Fast and Furious

June 20, 2012

  After months of posturing by both sides today was finally D-Day in the showdown between Eric Holder, the White House, and Darrell Issa. The events which unfolded today actually began in earnest yesterday after Darell Issa agreed to sit down in private with Eric Holder in an attempt–so says Eric Holder–to make a deal with Darrell Issa to avoid the contempt charges. But it turned out the deal wasn’t much of a deal at all, it sounded more like an ultimatum:

 Sadly the Attorney General said in the meeting that if we go forward with contempt we’d get no cooperation from that time forward. On the other hand he said that if we would take the briefing we’d have to close the case. We’re sorta between a rock and a hard spot.

We really have to go forward – yes contempt is unusual and the US Attorney pleading the case before a federal judge in DC can take some time and unfortunately during that time we don’t expect to get a lot of new discovery. But again, you really have no choice when the executive branch says no we won’t allow you to look into misconduct within the executive branch.

  The first part of that statement is just plain laughable because in order to continue cooperating Eric Holder would have had to have been cooperating in the first place. But anyway, basically Eric Holder made it sound like he was running the show, apparently forgetting that it is he who is under investigation, by trying to dictate the terms of his compliance.

   On one hand he is saying if Darrell Issa moved forward (to borrow Barack Obama’s communist campaign slogan) with an attempt at forced compliance with the subpoena he would stop talking to Darrell Issa, and if Darrell Issa wanted to hear a briefing on why he could not more fully comply with the subpoena he would have to agree to drop the Fast and Furious investigation before he even heard the briefing. Neither of these options were appealing to Darrell Issa so he told Eric Holder to be prepared to be held in contempt.

  What apparently happened next was something that I had not foreseen, although I guess I should have: A panicked Eric Holder ran to Barack Obama and asked him to invoke executive privilege  and seal the documents that Darrell Issa had been seeking all these months, and earlier today Barack Obama did just that even though he once railed against George W Bush for “hiding behind executive privilege every time there was something a little shaky.”

   And supplying weapons to known criminals who used these weapons to murder hundreds of Mexicans and two Americans is more than a little shaky, in fact it is criminal, but yet Barack Obama is hiding behind executive privilege to protect somebody in high places–maybe even himself.

  I believe that Eric Holder and Barack Obama came to the conclusion that if executive privilege was used that Darrell Issa would realize resistance was futile and would drop the contempt hearing, but an undismayed Darrell Issa moved forward and the Oversight Committee voted to hold Eric Holder in contempt by a party line vote of 23-17 as Democrats begin to circle the wagons for an election year showdown.

   Barack Obama’s decision infuriated Charles Grassley:

Sen. Chuck Grassley  of Iowa, ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary  Committee, who  first began the Fast and Furious investigation, said the  assertion by  the White House of executive privilege raises “monumental  questions.”

“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 said.

“The questions from Congress go to determining what happened in a   disastrous government program for accountability and so that it’s never   repeated again,”

  I couldn’t agree more, this decision by Barack Obama raises some major questions not the least of which is what is the Department of Injustice trying to hide?  Is it Barack Obama’s role in this deadly scandal or is it the possibility that the FBI is directly involved in Brian Terry’s and Jamie Zapata’s deaths?  The Department of Injustice has been trying to hide something and by invoking executive privilege Barack Obama has now for the first time actively involved himself in this scandal and the coverup. Whatever they are trying to hide, it is so big that Barack Obama found it necessary to ensure the results of this investigation are delayed until after the November election and it just might be possible that Barack Obama will now have to defend this decision in the courts because I am sure Darrell Issa will sue the regime to get these documents released.

  In my opinion there is one positive that could possibly come from today’s events and that is the fact that the mainstream media might possibly be forced to cover this issue in an election year, although the media will portray this as an election year witch hunt based on the fact that Eric Holder and Barack Obama are black. But once the people who haven’t been following this story because of the media’s duplicity in the coverup start to understand what happened in this scandal, and as they start to learn the details and not the spin, they will conclude on their own that this was a nefarious, deadly, and criminal undertaking which cannot possibly be defended.

39 Comments leave one →
  1. lou222 permalink
    June 20, 2012 9:17 pm

    I was lucky enough to be able to watch this on Cspan3 today. It was interesting to say the least! As you said it was “party line” and it was unbelievable. The left was more interested in protecting the AG than to try and find out why he was not going to give up any more documents or why this happened to innocent people. They were in full damage control. The right has alot of young go getters that are NOT willing to back down from this mess. Chaffetz and Gowdy are two that are VERY upset and want answers. It raises the question of why would Obama invoke the Executive Privilege if he was not involved? Can someone explain how and why he would do this given that it has been said he knew nothing about F&F. I am looking forward to see how the media will spin this. To hear the ranking member talk, it is truly a witch hunt and the spin is from Darrell Issa. We’ll see, won’t we??


    • June 20, 2012 9:35 pm

      This was one of those days when I was at work and wishing I was at home because I couldn’t wait to blog about it. I wish I could have watched it, it seemed very interesting!
      There is no reason for Obama to do this if he hadn’t seen the documents other than the fact that he already knows what is in them, and I would guess his name is in the documents. The media is going to spin this but I don’t think it will work of the people actually pay attention to the details and not the spin.


  2. LD Jackson permalink
    June 20, 2012 9:19 pm

    If for no other reason than his participation in this cover up, President Obama looks as guilty as sin. If he has nothing to hide, why did he use executive privilege and not release the documents Issa requested. Is he that much in love with Eric Holder?


    • June 20, 2012 9:38 pm

      Exacly Larry! Up until this point Obama had steered clear of the coverup, but now that he has done this he is involved in the coverup and it leads to the question of what he knew and when he knew it.


  3. bunkerville permalink
    June 20, 2012 9:24 pm

    I saw the hearing as well today. I think we got him. Zero has to be hiding something big time.


    • June 20, 2012 9:39 pm

      I wish I was able to see it, but it does sound like he and Holder are on the ropes here.I hope the Republicans don’t back downonce the smears start, but I don’t think they will.


    • lou222 permalink
      June 21, 2012 8:02 am

      Let’s say I watched MOST of it, had the laptop in the kitchen with me on the desk. When the left, Cummings, Norton-Holmes, Maloney, etc had their 5 minutes, I would get busy doing what I had to do, but I was still listening. Then when the right had their times, I would watch AND listen to them. Actions speak very loud in some cases, after seeing the posturing of the left, I did not want to “watch” them anymore. B, I am SO hoping you are right about “got him”! Hiding has been a big game to him from the time he arrived on the political scene, think we will ever know who the “real” Obama is? The outcome of F&F for me will be that the families of the murdered victims will have some form of peace and satisfaction in knowing that the American people did not condone this mess. We did not just let this go by the wayside, but found who was responsible and are holding them accountable. To some human life still has some value, to others, not so much.


      • bunkerville permalink
        June 21, 2012 8:27 am

        Dissapointment over the way the press is covering this. Not surprised, but they do set the frame of the story. If I hear Bush one more time….


      • lou222 permalink
        June 21, 2012 10:13 am

        Bush ( sorry B, had to say his name) had his faults, as well, but when do you finally own up to the fact that you are a big screw up? I wonder!!! The press??? Aren’t they pretty much a non-entity now? Something this huge not being reported on will come back and bite them in the butts.


      • June 21, 2012 10:17 pm

        Uh-oh, bunkerville isn’t going to want to see my latest post on Gunrunner! 🙂


  4. June 20, 2012 9:50 pm

    I’m old enough to remember Watergate and recall the night Nixon resigned as I was on my way to Mexico. I wasn’t happy about that, but in hindsight his resignation was the correct thing to do. I have no idea what Obama’s part in this thing was, but I must tell you I’m disgusted with this latest move by Holder and his boss. Something is rotten in Denmark and the American people have a right to the truth. The families of Brian Terry and Jamie Zapata have more that a right to the truth, they have a right to justice under the law and it’s becoming increasing clear that those in DOJ and now in the Oval Office are hiding the truth for political or personal reasons. On a personal note Steve, I know you have been posting on this issue for sometime now. At first I thought you had over-blown the matter, but it turns out you were correct. So thank you for keeping the ball rolling on what’s turning out to be a “big f**king thing” as Joe Biden might say!


    • June 21, 2012 6:45 am

      Thanks Ron, I always thought this was bigger than was being reported and wasn’t getting the coverage it deserved because the media is in the bag for Obama. I am glad it is finally starting to come to light because it appears as if the Obama regime is covering up something very big. We have two dead Americans as the result of this scandal and I hope that one day justice will be served.


    • lou222 permalink
      June 21, 2012 8:09 am

      Ron, I am old enough as well to remember Watergate. The difference I see is that Nixon was involved in only the coverup, but I feel that Obama has been knee deep in every piece of garbage that has transpired from this administration. Nixon did the right thing to resign, but I have a feeling that we will have to pull this family out of the White House while they are kicking and dragging their heels, they will not go willingly. Honor is not a word I will EVER associate with Obama, but Nixon did the honorable thing when he resigned….we should be so lucky to have that happen this time and for much worse circumstances.


      • June 21, 2012 10:19 pm

        Up until this point Obama has been able to distance himself from the cover up but now he is right in the middle of it. However, it wll be up to us to retire him in November because we know Obama won’t do the honorable thing.


  5. June 20, 2012 9:53 pm

    I spoke with a blogger today who use to be a beltway lawyer. He says that the Executive order is not valid unless Obama was privy to the documents Issa is wanting. So, Obama either lied about not knowing anything or the EO is not valid and he is participating in a cover-up. Sadly, he also said that assuming the House voted to hold Holder in contempt, it will take years to work through the courts and eventually it would be the Supreme Court that would decide to force the delivery of the documents or not.


    • June 21, 2012 6:46 am

      I think Obama has seen the documents, or he knows what is in them, and sadly I think your friend was right. This is going to delay any action on Fast and Furious well beyond the election, but hopefully the Republicans will not let this issue go.


    • lou222 permalink
      June 21, 2012 8:27 am

      Jim, that sounds good and bad. Good that we will probably find out that Obama did know about this OR was involved in it (or both), but Bad in the fact that it will drag out. I am sure that is not what the families want, but if that is the only way to get justice, we will take it. Someone has to be held accountable for this.


      • June 21, 2012 10:20 pm

        It will be good for the Republicans politically, but meanwhile we have to families which haven’t received justice.


  6. Anonymous permalink
    June 20, 2012 10:18 pm

    Rep. Issa deserves so much credit for putting the spotlight of truth on this issue when no other politician did, and absolutly nobody in the MSM did. And you Steve have kept up the fight.
    Two huge disconnects here. 1st., the same AG who is running around telling churches that Republicans want to take away voting rights because we want the same ID we show when we use a credit card to aslo be used to vote is telling Congress he can do what he wants. 2nd., we have a President who swore “transparity” on everything is doing everything possible to hide the truth.


    • June 21, 2012 6:49 am

      Thanks, the hypocrisy abounds in this regime, doesn’t it? I hope this isn’t the end of the road for the investigation and I hope that Issa continues to turn up the heat on Holder and Obama.


  7. June 20, 2012 11:28 pm

    Barry just interjected himself in this scandal by invoking executive privilege. That is proof that he knew all about this and was involved. Of course we all knew that, but now he’s essentially admitting it.

    Mitt, one more item you can use to dismantle this fraud with. Do it during a debate and watch this guy collapse like the house of cards he is.


    • June 21, 2012 6:50 am

      We did know he was involved but he had managed to stay above it all, but that changed yesterday and you have to think he knew it was closing in on him.


  8. June 20, 2012 11:28 pm

    all 23 Pachyderms vote to hold Holder in contempt; all 17 Dems vote against…

    “A Border Patrol agent murdered, over 50 Mexican nationals slaughtered — including the brother of the prosecutor the state of Chihuahua — over 2,000 weapons illegally distributed by a United States government agency into the hands of the drug cartels that are turning the Southwest into a war zone … and not a single Democrat wants to get to the bottom of it? Now that’s contemptible.”

    Cartoon at


    • June 21, 2012 6:51 am

      It sure is; the Democrats all put politics ahead of getting to the bottom of a program which killed hundreds of people.


    • lou222 permalink
      June 21, 2012 8:20 am

      Bob, I guess you could at least give them credit for being “loyal” to their party It doesn’t matter that they have lost all credibility as a human being, does it? At some point, I would assume that you have to admit wrong doing, but I could be wrong about that.


      • June 21, 2012 3:51 pm

        Same thing happened with Slick Willie when they tried to frame the Lewinsky affair as just another Clintonian sexcapade instead of dealing with his perjury and obstruction of justice, which was the real issue. Today’s Dems are a rag-tag gaggle of socialists devoid of any modicum of honor.


      • lou222 permalink
        June 21, 2012 6:54 pm

        I think you probably summed it up pretty well where the committee Dems were concerned that I watched yesterday.


      • June 21, 2012 10:21 pm

        Exaclty Bob, in Clinton’s case the Democrats were successful in diverting the attention from the real issue at hand and they haven’t changed at all in all these years.


  9. June 21, 2012 1:28 am

    Do you think Holder is going to resign?


    • June 21, 2012 6:52 am

      I go back and forth on that question, I don’t think he wants to but if Issa can somehow continue to put pressure on him maybe he will have to because it is an election year.


    • lou222 permalink
      June 21, 2012 8:16 am

      Are you serious, Harrison? You aren’t, right? Right now I am shaking my head, it is a big NO. He is another one that will go out kicking and screaming. As I said before, the motto of this administrations is: Lie, deny and make them prove it!!!


      • June 21, 2012 10:11 pm

        You’re probably right but they said that about Van Jones.



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