The House Oversight Committee, chaired by Congressman Darrell Issa (R-CA), voted to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt, on frivolous charges that the Department of Justice has refused to produce documents to aid Congress' investigation of the operation known as 'Fast and Furious.' The vote, entirely along party lines, came after the President himself intervened to assert executive privilege on certain documents.
In his post-vote statement, Congressman Crybaby accused General Holder of not producing documents subpoena'ed by his committee. Yet, the fact of the matter remains that the DOJ produced nearly 8,000 documents sought by Issa's committee. General Holder was willing to produce additional documentation that did not compromise the executive's privileges but also helped Congress. Still, this happened anyway. Why? Could it be that the NRA was holding a gun to the Republicans' heads on this vote?
“This is nothing more than a political witch hunt, perhaps best exemplified by the announcement of the NRA – which bizarrely sees the ‘Fast and Furious’ program as an effort to justify domestic gun control laws – that it would ‘score’ this contempt vote.” said Michael Keegan, President of People For the American Way.The PFAW wasn't making it up.
Nor, it is clear, are they making up this:
“The hoops the Committee is demanding the Attorney General jump through illustrate that these contempt hearings are as partisan as they are extreme. Over the course of this ‘investigation,’ the Committee has ordered the A.G. to produce documents whose confidentiality is protected by federal law, has refused to subpoena Bush Administration officials to testify about their knowledge of the operation during their time in office, has refused to allow public testimony from officials whose testimony counters Issa’s partisan narrative, and has repeatedly rejected the A.G.’s efforts to accommodate the committee, making compliance all but impossible.The Justice Department has both a legal right and a legal obligation to protect ongoing investigations, as General Holder has said in his own press release:
When Chairman Issa later began his own investigation, I made it clear that the Department would cooperate with all appropriate oversight requests, while still adhering to our legal obligations to protect information involving ongoing law enforcement investigations, legally-protected grand jury material and other sensitive information whose disclosure would endanger the American people or our agents investigating open cases.From the first moment on, Issa and the Republicans had no interest in uncovering the truth. The 8,000 documents the DOJ did turn over weren't enough not because they weren't relevant, but because they could find nothing scandalous in there to indict the President with. What, other than a witch hunt, explains the committee's absolute refusal to call Bush Administration officials to the witness chair, and their insistence on keeping public testimony from any witness who would contradict their charges? The Republicans didn't want to hear it, because they are not interested in the truth. They are interested in ginning up a scandal.
The Republicans have proven themselves once again a feckless party whose interests extend only to manufacturing scandals against their political opponents. With Clinton, there was a blue dress. With Obama, no blue dress, and the whole he's-a-black-Kenyan-socialist thing isn't working out too well. So, let's have a selective investigation, demand documents protected by the law, ignore what has been turned over, and whoa la - hope for a scandal.
Well, too bad. This vote only exposed the GOP as what they are. It will not help them hurt the president, and it will not help them get votes.