Monday, July 16, 2012

Is Citing Fast & Furious Mud Slinging?



There has been an up-tic in Fast & Furious chatter - Mitt mentioned it on Fox & Friends this morning. Look for the Complaint to be filed maybe Thursday.

Senator Grassley has asked whether U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. exercised independence when he declined to pursue criminal contempt without a “particularized description” of the withheld documents. Senator Grassley has also said that without this DOJ description, Mr. Machen “cannot reasonably make an intelligent judgment as to the validity of any privilege claim and his duty to present the citation to a grand jury."

This is a set up for seeking an independent prosecutor, but I do not think the House will go that way. They will stick with our good neighbors over at the five lawyer Office of General Counsel of the House of Representatives. Look for Senator Grassley and Representative Issa to use the unanswered question gambit, once the Complaint is filed.  It will be difficult to neutralize, while trying to "hide" something at the same time.

We at RFNJ know the procedure courts use in dealing with claims of executive privilege. The House will come forward with its particularized need for the documents, which will put Lanny "Deep in the Cheese" Breuer on defense. I have argued before that it will be very difficult for the DOJ to completely eliminate all inferences of wrongdoing, given the timeline.  

Look for Mitt to stress the "stale tactics" theme when the Complaint is filed, as the administration justifies the use of executive privilege.  It is deliciously Nixonian.

The big question may come after the DOJ turns over its privilege log. Will somebody with interests adverse to the DOJ blow apart deliberative process privilege?  As we know here, the privilege will not stand if the House shows misconduct in the publication of the February 4, 2011 DOJ letter claiming that ATF made “every effort to interdict weapons that have been purchased illegally and prevent their transportation to Mexico.” 

Keep in mind that the DOJ has introduced Michael Horowitz as their new watchdog. I would not want to be Jason Weinstein right now.  He has gone from protected author of a privileged report to prime witness.

8 comments:

Tom said...

It's not mudslinging, but it's obviously racist. (what isn't?!)

ikaika said...

I have a feeling Weinstein will be hung out to dry by his "friends".

frithguild said...

"Have there been mistakes made under AG Holder's watch?" asked MSNBC host the Rev. Al Sharpton, "Yes. But was he responsible for creating the Fast & Furious program, or has he been non-cooperative? No. Is he being unfairly targeted and dragged through the mud as a method of delay from other pressing issues? Undoubtedly for sure."

How will Al go over in the swing states like PA?

frithguild said...

The MSM opinion pieces from the usual suspects will signal the Obama response. The absence of opinions out there tells me Axelrod did not anticipate this move.

ikaika said...

If they allow Sharpton, Maddow, O'Donnell or even that old crone on the McGlaughlin group to shape and test-fire the Fast & Furious response, then this election is officially over.

A Romney win would be the "best-case scenario" for the current DoJ.

Holder and co. would be swept out with the rubbish and the gentleman's agreement not to prosecute the prior admin will stand.
No need to pardon, because the case will be dropped and justice will be served by popular opinion siting unfinished business.
Holder's legal career will be reduced to that of Analyst on some moonbat panel show.

Chess said...

I am beginning to wonder if Timmy G. and LIBOR might not become another little fire out there for BHO.
Tom.Frith... I would find it really easy to believe that every major central bank around the world would lean on their major banks to lower LIBOR to help ease the credit crunch.. I think it could be a couple of years though to get to the bottom of it all..But legally does a JPM look at the the Treasury Sec and say "he made us do it".

frithguild said...

Carville talked this weekend how the Democratic Priorities USA and American Bridge Super PACs that have basically driven the whole Bain/tax returns issue. This makes a lot of sense to me.

It is usually a bad idea to "go ugly early." Now Axlelrod is in a box because of loss of message control.

chess said...

1hr ago...

http://www.politico.com/blogs/burns-haberman/2012/07/purple-poll-economic-debate-close-romney-up-in-florida-129065.html

Mitt needs to seize all the GDP downgrades this am with the bad retail sales numbers...