DOJ IG report rips former U.S. Attorney for leak designed to smear Fast and Furious whistleblower; Update: Two more Fox News reporters’ e-mails obtained by DOJ

posted at 3:21 pm on May 20, 2013 by Allahpundit

Remember Dennis Burke? Here’s a memory freshener from November 2011:

Former Arizona U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke, who resigned in August, admitted late Tuesday that he leaked a document aimed at smearing Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agent John Dodson, an Operation Fast and Furious whistle-blower.

“Dennis regrets his role in disclosing the memo but he’s a stand-up guy and is willing to take responsibility for what he did,” Chuck Rosenberg, Burke’s lawyer, said according to NPR. “It was absolutely not Dennis’s intent to retaliate against Special Agent Dodson or anyone else for the information they provided Congress.”

Today the DOJ’s Inspector General released his report and found, yep, it most certainly was Burke’s intent to retaliate against Dodson for whistleblowing. The findings begin on page 17, but here’s the key bit:

We also concluded that Burke’s disclosure of the Dodson memorandum to Levine was likely motivated by a desire to undermine Dodson’s public criticisms of Operation Fast and Furious. Although Burke denied to congressional investigators that he had any retaliatory motive for his actions, we found substantial evidence to the contrary…

In sum, we found that Burke violated Department policy when he provided the Dodson memorandum to Fox News reporter Levine without Department approval, and that his explanations for why he did not believe his actions were improper were not credible. We believe this misconduct to be particularly egregious because of Burke’s apparent effort to undermine the credibility of Dodson’s significant public disclosures about the failures in Operation Fast and Furious…

We found Burke’s conduct in disclosing the Dodson memorandum to be inappropriate for a Department employee and wholly unbefitting a U.S. Attorney.

Matt Boyle has another memory freshener at Breitbart, namely that Burke isn’t the only former DOJ employee accused of trying to smear the Department’s critics. The DOJ’s director of public affairs resigned a few months ago after Boyle revealed e-mails between her and the studiously nonpolitical 501(c)(3) Media Matters showing them colluding to attack various reporters and administration opponents. And these, of course, are “minor” scandals compared to the DOJ launching a fishing expedition of AP reporters’ phone records — which we’re now learning was even broader than first thought — and essentially accusing Fox reporter James Rosen of committing the crime of reporting. The twisted irony of the IG scolding Burke at this particular moment is that Burke, compared to Holder and his deputies, was relatively mild in how he chose to punish a leaker. I wonder if he regrets that he resigned; kneecapping a whistleblower is normally grounds for promotion under Hopenchange.

Try to imagine the tone of the coverage of Holder, with all of this as backdrop, if he served under a Republican president.

Update: Fox News pulls no punches in its defense of Rosen:

“We are outraged to learn today that James Rosen was named a criminal co-conspirator for simply doing his job as a reporter. In fact, it is downright chilling. We will unequivocally defend his right to operate as a member of what up until now has always been a free press.”

If you’re wondering why Rosen was treated as a co-conspirator, Politico has the answer. Holder’s DOJ being what it is, they were looking for a way around a law that would have required them to let him know they were snooping on him:

It appears the prosecutors’ statements about Rosen having potentially committed a crime were aimed at allowing them to proceed through use of a search warrant rather than a grand jury subpoena or other means. Under the Privacy Protection Act of 1980, search warrants are only available to seize journalists’ work products under certain circumstances, such as when the journalist himself or herself is suspected of committing certain crimes.

If Rosen were considered simply a bystander, prosecutors might have had to use a subpoena, which would likely have involved notice to Rosen and a chance for him to fight the subpoena in court.

“Normally such searches require the approval of the attorney general,” Politico notes, which means we can look forward to another action-packed Eric Holder press conference soon. I asked on Twitter why O continues to keep Holder around given the stench of all this; the most convincing explanation came from Philip Klein, who argued (a) that firing Holder will only fan the “Scandal!” fire and (b) that it’ll give Obama a brand new headache in trying to have a new AG confirmed by the Senate. Fair points (as is the fact that Holder knows where the proverbial bodies are buried and might not appreciate O demanding his resignation), but the drip-drip-drip may force Obama’s hand. It’s one thing to anger tea partiers with IRS harassment; it’s another thing to anger reporters by snooping on them. He’s losing an important ally, at least on this narrow issue.

Here’s Brit Hume laying down the law:

Update: Via NRO, Fox News reported this afternoon that the DOJ has somehow been reading e-mails sent by two more of its journalists, William LaJeunesse and Mike Levine. They’re named in the IG’s report on Burke and Fast and Furious; scroll down to pages 11-14 for the key section. It’s not clear to me from reading it that their e-mails were obtained through snooping. It sounds like maybe Burke and Dodson simply gave the IG copies of the e-mails from their own accounts. But note the passage flagged by Shannon Bream in the clip about an “administrative subpoena.” Someone was identified as the owner of a private e-mail address without them knowing.


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Comment pages: 1 2 3

Let me tell you, I’d never hire someone with your negative, humorless, defeatist attitude….
Anti-Control on May 20, 2013 at 5:14 PM

Jeez. Guess I won’t send you my résumé.

But you’re missing the point I’m trying to make (unsuccessfully of course). I’m perfectly willing to laugh at Obama, but I voted for the other guys (and gal).

My sense of humor (or lack thereof) is not the issue. The issue is Alinsky tactics against people that are not ashamed of what we consider “bad” behavior. The leftists are proud of the IRS targeting Tea Party groups. They are proud of Candy Crawley lying during a debate for Obama. They love this stuff.

Instead of attacking me personally, why not actually show me a demonstration of Alinsky tactics being sucessfully used against leftists. Or if there are no real world examples, how about a hypothetical.

happytobehere on May 20, 2013 at 5:27 PM

While you douche-bags are covering politics…people and children in a flattened school are dead from the most destructive tornado in recent history.
stingray9813 on May 20, 2013 at 5:00 PM

What a moronic comment and commenter!

Schadenfreude on May 20, 2013 at 5:28 PM

While you douche-bags are covering politics…people and children in a flattened school are dead from the most destructive tornado in recent history.
stingray9813 on May 20, 2013 at 5:00 PM

You are a vulture, a ghoul, trying to use the deaths of children to divert attention from Obama’s crimes, which include the deaths of hundreds, if not thousands, of Mexican civilians, including children, from all the ObamaGuns from Obama’s Gun Running Merchant of Death Program, his Rolling 9/11 against Mexico.

VorDaj on May 20, 2013 at 5:29 PM

Classic case of projection.

GWB on May 20, 2013 at 5:15 PM

stingray is desperately trying to practice the politics of distraction because it worked in the past. Let him think it still works while this administration takes a pounding and the left turns on itself before our eyes.

Daemonocracy on May 20, 2013 at 5:30 PM

stingray9813 on May 20, 2013 at 5:00 PM

You sound like a scared Obamaton.

Schadenfreude on May 20, 2013 at 5:30 PM

stingray9813 on May 20, 2013 at 5:00 PM

carrion-consuming azzhole

Schadenfreude on May 20, 2013 at 5:31 PM

It appears the prosecutors’ statements about Rosen having potentially committed a crime were aimed at allowing them to proceed through use of a search warrant rather than a grand jury subpoena or other means.

It appears that a judge bought this lie without a shred of evidence.

Unless this judge puts the liar(s) in jail for a good long period under a contempt charge Congress should defund that court.

RJL on May 20, 2013 at 5:32 PM

Thanks for being me to me. I’m the one who consistently makes that point, perhaps the only one until you.

Next time try to tell me something I haven’t already said over and over.

Capitalist Hog on May 20, 2013 at 4:10 PM

I don’t think you’re making a point. I think you’re imaging demons where there are none. Being critical of the MSM is not equal to wishing the MSM’s rights were violated or restricted. Being critical is just another part of the 1st Amendment.

NotCoach on May 20, 2013 at 5:33 PM

Federal judge finds probable cause Fox News reporter helped leak classified docs

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/05/20/federal-judge-finds-probable-cause-fox-news-reporter-helped-leak-classified-docs/‘

stingray9813 on May 20, 2013 at 5:00 PM

You should learn to read. The ‘crime’ that Rosen supposedly committed is soliciting classified information from Kim. In other words, the judge found probable cause that something that isn’t a crime, happened.

rightmind on May 20, 2013 at 5:43 PM

Spock, I’ve found that evil usually triumphs – unless good is very, very careful.”

GWB on May 20, 2013 at 4:34 PM

Yeap that’s why the world today is ruled by total evil. That’s why the Nazi’s are moving into LA and the communists are taking options on a nice Tampa location. Evil is always destroyed because it destroys itself. It is the nature of evil to eat its own. Even now you can see it occurring in the WH. The press sec is trying to tell people the POTUS knew nothing about it but the consul and tresury did and didn’t tell him. How long do you think it will take for those “fall guys” to give the POTUS up? Sooner or later one of them turns and gives the information to deepthroat. Evil looks out for itself and by doing so it losses in the end. They turn on each other. It always happens. Why? who knows. it may survive for a time when the good do nothing but once good starts to fight evil it ends. Look at any evil regime or evil human activity. Slavary, facism, communism, fuedalism they all destoryed themselves. Sure some lasted for a while others lasted for a blip of time. But in the end they lose. The more good people fights the evil the quicker it ends.

This isn’t sci-fi this is human history. This is the way the world works.

unseen on May 20, 2013 at 5:46 PM

That’s why the Nazi’s are moving into LA and the communists are taking options on a nice Tampa location.

Wait… Are you suggesting they aren’t?

Sure. Different people, but the same ideology IS / has.

Just stealthily, not by the force of arms.

LegendHasIt on May 20, 2013 at 5:50 PM

Speaking for yourself.

VegasRick on May 20, 2013 at 5:19 PM

Yep, me and any moron stupid enough to reply.

Capitalist Hog on May 20, 2013 at 6:31 PM

Why weeks to find this out?

Schadenfreude on May 20, 2013 at 6:42 PM

My wife did some e-mail with Rosen, then noticed that get LinkedIn was visited by DHS

J_Crater on May 20, 2013 at 7:13 PM

Jeez. Guess I won’t send you my résumé.

But you’re missing the point I’m trying to make (unsuccessfully of course). I’m perfectly willing to laugh at Obama, but I voted for the other guys (and gal).

My sense of humor (or lack thereof) is not the issue. The issue is Alinsky tactics against people that are not ashamed of what we consider “bad” behavior. The leftists are proud of the IRS targeting Tea Party groups. They are proud of Candy Crawley lying during a debate for Obama. They love this stuff.

Instead of attacking me personally, why not actually show me a demonstration of Alinsky tactics being sucessfully used against leftists. Or if there are no real world examples, how about a hypothetical.

happytobehere on May 20, 2013 at 5:27 PM

I am going to address this in a way you probably won’t like, but that’s not my concern here.

You are a person who suffers from “‘Why?‘ Well, because I say so!” What good advice could someone like you give to a person who’s forced to deal with abusive addicts in denial? Personally, I don’t believe you’d have a clue about such a situation…I think you have a snarky, negative, hopeless & joyless attitude which does not lend itself to creativity nor problem-solving, and I believe that until you can figure out on your own why Alinsky believed in the truth of his Rule #5, there is no common ground between us for discussion on how to best counter leftards.

PS I want give you credit for something – I don’t believe you are a jerk! :)

Anti-Control on May 20, 2013 at 7:40 PM

Anti-Control on May 20, 2013 at 7:40 PM

Can’t say I disagree with anything you wrote. I’m quite joyless about this stuff, I admit. I doubt I’ll be too in your way as you joyfully knock down the Dems and take back the country.

I do understand the concept of “projection”. I do understand that Alinsky probably hated being mocked or whatever. I’m sure that is why he utilized this tactic. What I’m trying to say, and if you have an example of this please provide it, is that I have no knowledge of an actual demonstration of mockery working against the immoral Left. If someone is utterly without scruples how do mock them successfully? It’s easy for a community organizer to ridicule a well meaning local business etc. because the business actually means well! They don’t want to be thought of as horrible people. I think the Left likes to be thought of as horrible, I don’t think it dissuades them, quite the contrary.

But I do actually appreciate the continuous criticism of me personally. I would rather be upbeat about our future as a nation. That’s why I ask about this stuff. Probably a better way to help me be more upbeat is to cite some examples of Alinsky 5 working against the left.

happytobehere on May 20, 2013 at 8:39 PM

“Holder knows where the proverbial bodies are buried…”
He knows where the real bodies are buried, too.

lobo603 on May 20, 2013 at 9:42 PM

Capitalist Hog on May 20, 2013 at 4:48 PM

So basically, you just come here to treat people in a manner you don’t have the nerve to display in person? And thanks for pointing out the anonymity. Who knew?

Cindy Munford on May 20, 2013 at 9:53 PM

The Obama administration is absolutely right – this scandal is NOTHING like Watergate / Nixon’s scandal…

OBAMA’S SCANDAL DWRFS NIXON’S WATERGATE!

Bring in a bus, & march out in an orange-jumpsuit-clad, ankle & wrist chain-sporting line Obama, Holder, Miller, & anyone else involved – put them on the bus, & take them straight to a federal pen!

I will continue to say it – Obama is an ‘enemy of the state’, an enemy to the Constitution, to the rule of law, & is a criminal — anything allowed in order to push his agenda.

easyt65 on May 21, 2013 at 9:40 AM

It is the COVER-UP that ‘kills’ ya!

Fast & Furious was Obama’s 1st serious FAILURE, & like someone who is more interested in avoiding a personally/politically damaging problem Obama spent his effort hiding/covering it up rather than being open about it & attempting to rectify the problem. The COVER-UP STILL CONTINUES.

It is the COVER-UP that ‘kills’ ya!

Benghazi was yet ANOTHER Obama FAILURE…but this time it was a case of a plan’s ‘execution failure’. Benghazi was a series of either ignorant or planned (D@mn-near criminal) decision-making. Trusting AL QAEDA-BACKED rebels to protect our Ambassador/Americans – especially after 2 previous terrorist attacks, even if a case of stupidity would be a CRIMINAL case of stupidity. Being ‘awol’ during the whole attack, modifying the CIA talking points a dozen times, sending Rice out to the talk shows, making up the story about the vide, refusing to send help…all of these were calculated DECISIONS. They may have been ignorant decisions, but they were decisions just the same. And make no mistake, the cover-up was all about protecting Obama’s re-election chances & Hillary’s 2016 chances. The COVER UP STILL CONTINUES.

You are a product of where you are from & who your friends/associates are.

The IRS Scandal — it’s about an ‘enemies’ list, about intimidation, threats, punishment, control, wiping out the competition. It’s the ‘Chicago Way’. It’s also the Socialist (Frank Marshall Davis / Saul Alynski) Way. It is the Jeremiah Wright hate-spewing, Anti-American Communist-based Black Liberation Theology Church way! It is the way of a man who did not try to hide who he was when he TOLD Americans before the 2008 election that he would fundamentally change the the U.S. It is the way of the man who openly, proudly adopted the historically-documented Soccialist Icon & slogan of ‘Forward’ as his own during the 2nd election.

Obama has proven he is an Enemy of the State, an Enemy to the Constitution, to the Rule of Law, to what this nation stands for, has always stood for. He may have been born in America, but he is no AMERICAN! There is a VERY big difference! For example: Someone BORN in America declares they have NEVER BEEN PROUD OF THEIR COUNTRY, the way Michelle Obama did – an AMERICAN doesn’t do that!

For the sake of his own ‘reign’ Obama cast aside once again the Constitution and our laws to TARGET Americans, to prey upon them rather than protect them & their rights! AMERICAN leaders do not prey upon the American people! Obama may be the American President but he is no AMERICAN President!

easyt65 on May 21, 2013 at 10:14 AM

(as is the fact that Holder knows where the proverbial bodies are buried and might not appreciate O demanding his resignation),

I’m sure it’s let’s make a deal time in the Democratic camp right now.

lea on May 21, 2013 at 10:45 AM

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