Issa to Holder on F&F: “You are not a good witness”

posted at 4:01 pm on June 7, 2012 by Erika Johnsen

Earlier this week, House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa revealed that he had acquired new evidence supporting his claim that senior DOJ officials were well aware of the gunwalking occuring as part of the (not-”botched”) operation known as Fast & Furious. This morning, the House Judiciary Committee brought Attorney General Eric Holder in to testify regarding the new evidence.

Chairman Lamar Smith opened his remarks with Fast and Furious, saying the Department of Justice has not provided enough information about the operation that has left hundreds dead in Mexico and at least one U.S. federal agent, Brian Terry, dead. Smith berated the Justice Department for its failure to comply with Congressional subpoenas that “may shed light on why this program was authorized and who had knowledge of the inappropriate tactics.” …

“Fast and Furious was a mid-level, regional investigation,” Holder said. “Mr. Weinstein and Mr. Breuer did not know about the tactics being used in Fast and Furious until the beginning of last year.”

When asked about whether his senior officials in the Justice Department had simply read the wiretap applications, Holder responded by saying his top officials did not read the affidavits and the details of what was in the Fast and Furious wiretaps while trying to talk his way around the questions asked.

“Mr. Attorney General, you are not a good witness. Good witnesses answer the question,” Issa said. …

“A reasonable person would only come to the conclusion that senior members of the department of Justice knew about gunwalking tactics in Fast and Furious,” Rep. Jason Chaffetz said.

Lanny Breuer, by the way, is the Assistant Attorney General of the DOJ’s criminal division — a.k.a., one of Holder’s lieutenants. Chairman Issa said wiretap applications were signed by Mr. Breuer.

Chairman Issa was visibly frustrated; for just a taste of how contentious things got, here’s a clip (h/t Right Scoop) of Issa trying to grill holder while being continually interrupted by his scolding colleagues (and you can quit it with the smarm, Holder):

Besides the entertainment value, the real gist of that clip is that the DOJ has at least 140,000 documents relating to Fast & Furious, but have decided to only produce 7,600. What is it, sirs, that you’re so keen on hiding, exactly?

Among other run-arounds, Holder tried to use the tactical precedent set by the “previous administration” (really?) and insisted that all of the gunwalking programs were merely “flawed in concept and execution.” Here’s a particularly damning exchange with Rep. Chaffetz:

In summary, Eric Holder is still trying to deny that senior DOJ officials had any hand in Operation Fast & Furious, while he continues to stonewall, alter his story, and ignore the Congressional subpoena. As Rep. Gosar tweeted,

 

Woops: I initially only wrote the Lanny Breuer was the Assistant Attorney General, rather than the Assistant Attorney General of the criminal division; clarification added above!


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Because if they scream, Obama deports all of the illegals back tomorrow and they have mass chaos on their hands. Their system cannot support the population they have – let alone another 11 million people.

CycloneCDB on June 7, 2012 at 5:56 PM

It’s a far bigger/worse reason than that.

Ask yourself, how does the Mexican gov’t feel about US guns? Can anyone say C-O-M-P-L-I-C-I-T along with me?

Bizarro No. 1 on June 7, 2012 at 6:04 PM

I don’t get that either. Why isn’t Mexico on the warpath?
slickwillie2001 on June 7, 2012 at 5:55 PM

Because the Govenment of Mexico is PART of it.

They win no matter how it turns out.
You think Calderon and all of his ‘cabinet’ and 8 out of 10 of the bureaucrats AREN’T either members of the cartels or at least ‘owned’ by them?

LegendHasIt on June 7, 2012 at 6:14 PM

Sorry Bizzaro I didn’t read page 2 before posting… I wasn’t copying, honest.

LegendHasIt on June 7, 2012 at 6:15 PM

Lanny Breuer, by the way, is the Assistant Attorney General — a.k.a., Holder’s second-in-command.

Erika — Just a minor correction on this, but Breuer is the head of the Criminal Division; AAGs run the various major components of the department. Deputy Attorney General James Cole is Holder’s second.

Holder’s actions as AG shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone; after all, we got the measure of his integrity long ago when he was Deputy AG under Reno and looking the other way on various Clinton-era pardons. He and this administration have successfully blustered their way through politicizing DOJ (particularly the Civil Rights Division), dropping the New Black Panther case, opposing efforts to curb voter fraud, and so on . . . and they know that even if the House holds him in contempt, that’s something that his own U.S. Attorney for DC would have to bring up in court. With F&F, they’re playing for time until the election and they’ll continue to dismiss valid oversight investigations as partisan sniping for as long as the public has no idea that this scandal even took place.

Farragut Jones on June 7, 2012 at 6:16 PM

Sorry Bizzaro I didn’t read page 2 before posting… I wasn’t copying, honest.

LegendHasIt on June 7, 2012 at 6:15 PM

Oh, I knew that before I saw your post to me!

Bizarro No. 1 on June 7, 2012 at 6:21 PM

It’s a far bigger/worse reason than that.

Ask yourself, how does the Mexican gov’t feel about US guns? Can anyone say C-O-M-P-L-I-C-I-T along with me?

Bizarro No. 1 on June 7, 2012 at 6:04 PM

That too. Either way – Obama is holding all the cards with them…and they know it.

CycloneCDB on June 7, 2012 at 6:29 PM

We have a clueless, gutless, ball baby as speaker of the house. Otherwise order in hearings would prevail and subpenas would be answered.
Holder knows Boehner has not the guts to hold him in contempt as he thinks it will damage the Repunks chances in Nov. Boehners head must roll before Holders, Breuers, Weinsteins or Obamas will!
Gentlemen find your balls, honor your oaths of office or resign and let someone else do the job you are not up to!

ConcealedKerry on June 7, 2012 at 6:32 PM

Looking forward to BOR’s inevitable Body Language segment, analyzing the smirky Eric Holder. I think ACE did something on this recently from a professional lie spotter, it’s called “duping smile”.

Buy Danish on June 7, 2012 at 6:36 PM

Jail the racist f#ck.

They’ll have him tieing his shirt into a halter top and wearing a wig within a week.

Tim_CA on June 7, 2012 at 6:38 PM

Hopefully he will be in prison after 0 loses…

OmahaConservative on June 7, 2012 at 4:05 PM

There is no question that Holder will get a pardon from Hussein on his way out the door. The only way this scumbag will be brought to justice is if a state or states bring charges against him for conspiracy to commit murder.

wildcat72 on June 7, 2012 at 4:06 PM

The best thing that could happen is for Obama to lose befoe any charges are brought against Holder. That way when they convict him he has no one to pardon him.

Rio Linda Refugee on June 7, 2012 at 6:47 PM

The best thing that could happen is for Obama to lose befoe any charges are brought against Holder. That way when they convict him he has no one to pardon him.

Rio Linda Refugee on June 7, 2012 at 6:47 PM

Obama could still pardon him before he left for any and all possible offenses related to F&F, even though Holder was not formally charged with anything..

That’s basically the kind of pardon Ford gave Nixon, who was only named as an unindicted co-conspirator.

Wethal on June 7, 2012 at 7:03 PM

Heck, Obie already signed the pardons, he just left the date…….TBA……….

angrymike on June 7, 2012 at 7:14 PM

Wethal on June 7, 2012 at 7:03 PM

Thanks for the clarification. I guess he just needs to be …….

Rio Linda Refugee on June 7, 2012 at 7:15 PM

Issa to Holder on F&F: “You are not a good witness”

Holder is not even a good liar. Practiced, yes, but not good.

IrishEyes on June 7, 2012 at 7:27 PM

Who are the hacks that interrupted Issa?

theperfecteconomist on June 7, 2012 at 7:30 PM

Watching that little lintball squirm in his seat at every question is nauseating.

Excellent article, Erika. You’re quickly showing that you’ve got the mad skillz to blog alongside Allah and Ed.

MadisonConservative on June 7, 2012 at 7:40 PM

Rep. Chaffetz: The email says Fast and Furious, you say it doesn’t; I’ve got it in black abd white.

Holder: I have superior knowledge.

Holder, your boss claims the same thing, in spite of facts. Guess you are just as delusional and narcissistic.

IrishEyes on June 7, 2012 at 7:44 PM

The MSM completely ignores F+F so in a way the leftists here are right, no one cares. Because they don’t know.

But if you live in a border state you are aware of just how wrong it is that we literally gave the cartels some very decent hardware for some very sketchy reasons.

Those ‘civilian’ AR15s and AKs can be made select fire by an amateur gunsmith too, which turns them into what the public considers (wrongly) machine guns…

CorporatePiggy on June 7, 2012 at 7:58 PM

This headline should be on the front page of the NYT and WAPO:

UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT SOLD MACHINE GUNS TO MURDEROUS MEXICAN DRUG CARTELS.

Maybe, and it is a maybe, that would get someone’s attention.

CorporatePiggy on June 7, 2012 at 8:01 PM

Unfortunately it looks like Issa and the Republicans don’t have the testicular fortitude to do what is necessary and charge Holder with a criminal offense.

If they’re not going to play for keeps, then they need to just turn it into a campaign issue to hang around Holder’s boss’ neck during the election.

If you can’t convict him in court, convict in public opinion.

From what I’ve seen, America apparently doesn’t CARE about guns walking into Mexico.

Sad really.

Defenestratus on June 7, 2012 at 8:12 PM

Chairman Issa may be frustrated, but unless the clock runs out on this, Issa has him.

Bmore on June 7, 2012 at 8:21 PM

Rep. Chaffetz nailed him. Holder is in deed in deep doo doo. Will the clock run down? That is all that will let him walk on this. The chronological order doesn’t add up. Superior knowledge or not.

Bmore on June 7, 2012 at 8:24 PM

Great post Erika, more please. ; )

Bmore on June 7, 2012 at 8:25 PM

Not knowing is not a valid excuse. He is head of the DoJ and is responsible for everything, good or bad. It is his problem if he can’t run the organization.

Russ86 on June 7, 2012 at 8:59 PM

Not knowing is not a valid excuse. He is head of the DoJ and is responsible for everything, good or bad. It is his problem if he can’t run the organization.

Russ86 on June 7, 2012 at 8:59 PM

Two possibilities and only two. One, he knew, therefore is a crook and should be fired and prosecuted.

Two, he didn’t know, and any normal person in that position would be going through the department with a flamethrower and fixing what went wrong.

He’s not doing the latter, so I have to go with the former.

slickwillie2001 on June 7, 2012 at 9:10 PM

slickwillie2001 on June 7, 2012 at 9:10 PM

Thats right a competent Department head would be lookin for someone to hang out to dry to save his own hide if he thought it would save him so Holder and Obama are so dirty they wont survive a hit job on a subordinate or so completely incompetent as to be unable to continue in their jobs if the pressure was brought to the public in ways they could not miss!

Or their race so insulates them that the public expects this degree of incompetence and accepts it as the price of affirmative action admission. if its the last it doesn’t bode well for our society and race relations

ConcealedKerry on June 7, 2012 at 9:37 PM

Three things:

1. Impeachment is NOT in any shape form or fashion a criminal process. The only penalty is removal from office. That’s why the pardon power doesn’t apply to it; it is strictly a political process.

2. “It is by my order and for the good of the state that the bearer has done what has been done.” A pardon does NOT have to be for specific offenses.

3. Because impeachment is a political process, it is a 100% waste of time to impeach unless you have 67 Senators lined up to vote to confirm it. Between the Copperheads and the RINOs like McCain, does anyone think O! couldn’t get 34 votes? Incidentally, that also means that O! can do any damned thing he pleases and no one can stop him without technically being outside the law themselves.

SDN on June 7, 2012 at 10:11 PM

Issa just finished an interview with Greta on FOX and says he hopes to have a date set to slap Holder with contempt before the July 4 break.

stukinIL4now on June 7, 2012 at 10:18 PM

Looking forward to BOR’s inevitable Body Language segment, analyzing the smirky Eric Holder. I think ACE did something on this recently from a professional lie spotter, it’s called “duping smile”.

Buy Danish on June 7, 2012 at 6:36 PM

I just watched Issa on Greta. Wow! I hadn’t seen any of the exchange today between him and Holder until then.

Not only did Holder look absolutely awful, people who are worried about the possibility of Issa wavering should look at his body language, too. He is not wimping out, not at all – it’s the opposite, actually.

Bizarro No. 1 on June 7, 2012 at 11:05 PM

“I have superior knowledge.”
Well then, that pretty much covers it.
What’s on TV?

Kenosha Kid on June 8, 2012 at 12:26 AM

If Issa is waiting until after Obama is out of office, then just like the “crucify” guy, Holder wouldn’t have to show up for the hearing, would he? He would just have to resign the day before Romney is sworn in.

cptacek on June 8, 2012 at 3:01 AM

Not discussed much here, but Issa has made it pretty clear that he has a mole in Holder’s shop. Both Holder and Issa need to be delicate with this, but clearly it is a huge problem for Holder.He has no idea what Issa has, thus the “I don’t know”. It is interesting that Holder actually READ the wire tap apps AFTER Issa said he had them. Didn’t care about them before.
By the way those Tap apps are a problem for DOJ. Holder said they were “rubber stamped” and not read. THis to protect folks from admitting knowledge. But, against policy.
The “not about F&F” comment was insane. Multiple references to F&F AND Tucson make it clear the BOTH ops were in play.
What he THINKS he knows is irrelavent.

Jabberwock on June 8, 2012 at 6:48 AM

Issa just finished an interview with Greta on FOX and says he hopes to have a date set to slap Holder with contempt before the July 4 break.

stukinIL4now on June 7, 2012 at 10:18 PM

Sure hope so. It’s demoralizing to see this little worm thumb his nose at the world around him.

petefrt on June 8, 2012 at 7:21 AM

I’m sure glad all we do is give a stern lecturing to a bunch of lying POS’s. Yeah, that’ll show ‘em! How long has this dragged out? You watch, Boehner will quash any contempt citation…must play nice now!

Wake me up when the world makes sense again…

insidiator on June 8, 2012 at 8:09 AM

ICYMI, here’s Trey Gowdy (SC) and Louie Gohmert (TX) ripping Holder a new one at yesterday’s hearings.

Gowdy to Holder: U.S. Attorney General Should Not Be Guided By Politics

Rep. Gohmert rips Holder into shreds: Your job is JUSTICE Mr. Attorney General!

Flora Duh on June 8, 2012 at 8:31 AM

Boehner, who finally reached the top of the mountain as speaker, is quaking in his boots over F&F. He’s worried that Issa will actually find enough evidence to charge Holder with a federal offense. Then he would have to take action. If we had people like this back in 1776, we’d be celebrating the queen’s jubilee today.

Kissmygrits on June 8, 2012 at 8:36 AM

Oh, and for those of you wondering why Mexico isn’t speaking out about this, they are, but you sure won’t hear about from the media.

Mexican attorney general: “Obama more involved in Fast & Furious than admitted!” September 28, 2011

Mexican president scatters blame far and wide for ‘Fast and Furious’ mistakes May 02, 2012

Mexico upset by Fast and Furious as revelation surfaces that Obama accepts killing as part of presidency 06/03/2012

Some of you need to be more patient, as frustrating as it is. I think Issa knows exactly what he’s doing and is timing events just right to do the most damage to Obama.

Brit Hume ‏@Kimsfirst

Thought Obama would not be burdened with major scandals this year, but Nat Sec leaks and Fast & Furious stonewall making me start to wonder.

Flora Duh on June 8, 2012 at 8:45 AM

Rep. Chaffetz: The email says Fast and Furious, you say it doesn’t; I’ve got it in black and white.

Holder: I have superior knowledge.

…To which the answer should have been:

Then why haven’t you produced the source of this “superior” knowledge? Or was it a divine revelation?

ebrawer on June 8, 2012 at 9:30 AM

Issa comes off unhinged.
He’s either complaining that Holder isn’t fully answering or cutting off in the middle of Holder attempting to do so.
And of course he doesn’t like the witness or the answers…they don’t support his fantasy conspiratorial narrative.
Pure partisan hackery.
Silly.

verbaluce on June 8, 2012 at 10:49 AM

File the contempt charge and impeach his sorry ass. NOW.

dogsoldier on June 7, 2012 at 4:06 PM

You do realize that we have THE limpest Speaker in history, right? Nobody will be brought up on charges….nobody will be impeached.

tencole on June 8, 2012 at 10:49 AM

Question for those of you who are purveyors of the law;
Because Holder is the Attorney General, how do Issa & the Republicans go about appointing a Special Counsel to get this thing prosecuted?

Susanboo on June 8, 2012 at 10:54 AM

Issa comes off unhinged.
He’s either complaining that Holder isn’t fully answering or cutting off in the middle of Holder attempting to do so.
And of course he doesn’t like the witness or the answers…they don’t support his fantasy conspiratorial narrative.
Pure partisan hackery.
Silly.

verbaluce on June 8, 2012 at 10:49 AM

Do you care to rationally explain why there are whistleblowers regarding F&F, and why they’re being punished by 0bamessiah’s administration, if there’s nothing untoward going on at all, hmmmm? LOL

There is not a lot in life I enjoy more than seeing intellectually dishonest political hacks like you who are in deep, deep denial get their comeuppance – I have no doubt your time is coming with F&F, and sooner than you fear!

You won’t mind it one bit when I look you up here at HA to rub your nose in it as the house of cards starts collapsing within the next month or so, will you? :)

Bizarro No. 1 on June 8, 2012 at 12:12 PM

Wiretaps Show Holder Knew Much More About ‘Fast and Furious’

“The wiretap applications obtained by the committee show such statements made by senior department officials regarding the wiretaps to be false and misleading,”

HEADS NEED TO ROLL!! NOW!!

http://www.fastnfuriousinvestigation.com/

Capt-Dax on June 8, 2012 at 12:42 PM

He may not be a good witness…but he is a good host of other things. For example, he is a good:

Political Hack

Liar

Criminal

Crook (Yes….He is a crook…In my best Richard Nixon voice)

Scalawag

That is about enough at this point. Need I go on to make my point?

logicman_1998 on June 8, 2012 at 1:08 PM

Holder=JAIL

TX-96 on June 8, 2012 at 1:49 PM

Darrell Issa FTW.

Vanilla Salt on June 8, 2012 at 2:51 PM

Rep. Chaffetz: The email says Fast and Furious, you say it doesn’t; I’ve got it in black and white.

Holder: I have superior knowledge.

This is just stunningly arrogant. They think that whatever they say is gospel regardless of facts right in front of their faces.

crazywater on June 11, 2012 at 11:03 AM

Comment pages: 1 2