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Executive privilege invoked to shield Holder’s shoddy management of Justice Department?

In the wake of the Department of Justice’s (DoJ) Inspector General’s report on the Fast and Furious gunrunning scandal, the best that can be said about Attorney General Eric Holder is that he is an incompetent manager of the DoJ.  The reports says he “was not made aware of potential flaws in the program until February of last year.

(Not aware of the flaws in the program, but was he aware of the program?)  In what kind of agency is the chief executive (as Holder is at DoJ) not informed of the flaws in this type of operation, particularly given that it involves an another county.  (The operation “allowed weapons to ‘walk’ across the U.S.-Mexico border and resulted in hundreds of firearms turning up at crime scenes in both countries.”)

If, wonders HotAir’s Erika Johnsen Holder “had no knowledge of Fast and Furious before the investigation got going…

then still, why President Obama’s invocation of executive privilege on all those subpoenaed Fast & Furious-related documents? It’s not like this is a matter of national-security sensitivity. If it wasn’t to shield Holder personally, then it still seems that it was at Holder’s request in order to buy him some time to shield his shoddy management of his department, and merely helped to add authority to his uncooperative stonewalling of Congress’s attempt to get to the bottom of the obvious wrongdoing that went down here somewhere. Grossly inappropriate use of executive authority, to say the least? I find myself puzzled.

She’s not the only one who’s puzzled.  One wonders if any report will now ask the president that question:  why did Mr. Obama invoke executive privilege if Holder wasn’t aware of the “potential flaws” in the operation?

UPDATE: IG: Obama shouldn’t have kept Fast and Furious documents from Congress:

Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz agreed that President Obama was wrong to assert executive privilege over documents related to Fast and Furious, saying that he “insisted” such documents appear in his report to Congress.

And wasn’t this the president who promised the most transparent administration ever?

UP-UPDATE:  In a more detailed analysis of Holder’s obliviousness to problems going on under his own nose, Jim Geraghty writes, “The most generous interpretation is that he staffed his office with professionals with epically egregious judgment in deciding what the nation’s top law-enforcement officer needs to know.”  Read the whole thing.

UP-UPDATE:  Glenn Reynolds reports, “‘ABC NEWS: President Obama Falsely Claims Fast and Furious Program “Begun Under the Previous Administration.‘ ‘In actuality, the Fast and Furious program was started in October 2009, nine months into the Obama presidency.'”  The adverb, “falsely” is in the ABC News report.  Even some folks in the legacy media are catching on.  (Maybe they decided to cover the Obama administration more accurately, given the latest Gallup report on growing public distrust of the “mass media”.)



  1. One wonders if any report will now ask the president that question: why did Mr. Obama invoke executive privilege if Holder wasn’t aware of the “potential flaws” in the operation?

    Yes, it’s a good question. Unfortunately, it’s also a question that will never be asked . . . or answered.

    Comment by Observer — September 19, 2012 @ 6:38 pm - September 19, 2012

  2. I hate executive privilege
    I hated it under Clinton, Bush and Now Obama

    I get it. The writers of the constitution wanted separation of powers to avoid a run-away legislative branch. But in cases such as this, we don’t need an to take the constitution word-for-word and should allow for nuance

    Comment by mike — September 19, 2012 @ 10:10 pm - September 19, 2012

  3. And the media will once again yawn, and move on to whatever they can attack Romney with.

    But really is there anyone out there who thinks Holder had no clue? REally? I have some really nice ocean front property to sell you.

    Comment by Just Me — September 19, 2012 @ 11:00 pm - September 19, 2012

  4. I don’t know, Just Me. Holder doesn’t strike me as an intellectual giant. But then, everyone in this administration is AT LEAST one of three things:

    1. A Marxist/Statist/Collectivist…pick your flavor
    2. Incompetent
    3. A Criminal

    Quite a few are in the running for a TRIFECTA.

    Comment by Bastiat Fan — September 20, 2012 @ 12:11 am - September 20, 2012

  5. Bastiat Fan,

    Picture them standing on top of Lenin’s Tomb during the May Day parade and smiling down at the people they have broken, beaten and screwed. Comrades of a feather stick together. Even the party hack is one-dimensional stubborn in the game.

    And now they have usurped the flag and replaced the stars with their statist, central planning Obama/Rolling Stones rip-off logo for a bumper sticker, poster, etc.

    Comment by heliotrope — September 20, 2012 @ 8:50 am - September 20, 2012

  6. heliotrope:

    I sure hope I wake up from this bad dream in November….

    Comment by Bastiat Fan — September 20, 2012 @ 12:03 pm - September 20, 2012

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