Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

Judge orders DOJ to release Fast and Furious documents blocked by Obama

Katie Pavlich reports on it for Townhall.com.

Excerpt:

Thanks to a Freedom of Information Act Lawsuit pursued against the Department of Justice by government watchdog Judicial Watch, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has ruled documents being withheld from Congress under President Obama’s claim of executive privilege must be turned over. Obama made the claim on the same day Attorney General Eric Holder was voted in criminal and civil contempt of Congress in June 2012.

“This order forces the Obama DOJ, for the first time, to provide a detailed listing of all documents that it has withheld from Congress and the American people for years about the deadly Fast and Furious gun running scandal,” Judicial Watch released in a statement.

The FOIA lawsuit has been ongoing for 16-months and is now proceeding after a lengthy delay. The Justice Department originally asked the court for an indefinite hold on a FOIA request from Judicial Watch, citing executive privilege and an ongoing investigation. That indefinite hold request was shot down more than a year ago.

The documentation DOJ is required to now turn over is a “Vaughn index” of “all requested Fast and Furious materials from a June 2012 Judicial Watch FOIA request.”

A Vaughn index must: (1) identify each document withheld; (2) state the statutory exemption claimed; and (3) explain how disclosure would damage the interests protected by the claimed exemption.” In ordering the DOJ to provide Judicial Watch the Vaughn index, the Court ruled, “In this circuit, when an agency is withholding documents under exemption claims, courts require that the agency provide a Vaughn index so that the FOIA requester – at a distinct informational disadvantage – may test the agency’s claims.”

“Once again, Judicial Watch has beat Congress to the punch in getting key information about another Obama scandal – this time, the Fast and Furious outrage,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said in a statement. “A federal court has ordered the Obama administration to produce information that could, for the first time, provide specific details who in the administration is responsible for Fast and Furious lies to Congress and the American people. This is a battle that put Eric Holder in contempt of Congress, saw Nixonian assertions of executive privilege by Barack Obama, and a hapless Congress in face of all this lawlessness. Finally, we may get some accountability for Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry and the countless others murdered as a result of the insanely reckless Obama administration program.”

Unfortunately, this is coming too late for Obama’s 2012 re-election contest, and the mainstream media is unlikely to report it, just like they failed to report the IRS scandal. But if we all share this story, it will help people to realize how lawless and corrupt this administration really is. It’s gangster government, as Michele Bachmann said. The crooks are in charge.

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House Republicans vote to hold Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress

From CBS News.

Excerpt:

The Republican-led House voted Wednesday to hold former Internal Revenue Service official Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress for refusing to answer questions related to the agency’s undue scrutiny of certain tax-exempt groups.

The vote to hold Lerner in contempt of Congress was 231-187, with all Republicans voting in favor and all but a few Democrats voting against.

It’s now up to a local U.S. attorney to consider criminal charges against Lerner. The Justice Department, however, has ignored past contempt charges against executive branch officials, including contempt charges against Attorney General Eric Holder.

[...]Republicans maintain they are determined to get to the bottom of the scandal and find out why IRS officials, starting in 2010, unfairly targeted groups for their political activity.

[...]In addition to holding Lerner in contempt, the House also voted 250-168 to approve a resolution calling on Holder to appoint a special counsel to investigate the IRS targeting.

According to Hot Air, “Lerner could face fines up to $100,000 and even a up to a year of jail time”.

In other news, Trey Gowdy, who is heading the new select committee on Benghazi, is kicking some serious ass.

Transcript fragment:

MEGYN KELLY: I know you said you intend to subpoena her, that you want her to appear before your committee. However, and I say this respectfully, the last time she appeared before Congress what we had was a series of speeches from the lawmakers, without that many probing questions. I hear that from my viewers often when we look back on those hearings. What would be different this time?

TREY GOWDY: Well, what will be different is I’m not necessarily committing to hearing. I’m committing to the getting the answers and may be in the form of a deposition, which, as you know, Megyn, as a very good attorney, which you once were, that is the route that is most conducive with eliciting the truth. It’s not five minutes of pounding your chest in a committee room. It’s a deposition.

MEGYN KELLY: Can she get out of that?

TREY GOWDY: Well, if she can get out of a subpoena, she can get out of it. But I don’t send invitations to cocktail parties. We’re going to send subpoenas and we’re going to expect her to comply and if you don’t comply, she’ll suffer the same panoply of consequences that any of your viewers who don’t comply with a subpoena would suffer.

I was hoping they were going to pick him to lead the committee, and I believe we are finally going to get some answers on this scandal.

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Coalition of African American Pastors: impeach Attorney General Holder

First, let’s see what Eric Holder is doing with respect to gay marriage.

CNS News explains.

Excerpt:

State attorneys-general who refuse to defend state laws banning same-sex marriage won’t face any objection from the nation’s top law enforcement official. In fact, Attorney General Eric Holder will applaud them.

According to Holder, “decisions at any level not to defend individual laws must be exceedingly rare. They must be reserved only for exceptional – truly exceptional – circumstances.’

He said that state laws banning same-sex marriage rise to that “truly exceptional” standard — because they do not “advance the values that once led our forebears to declare unequivocally that all are created equal and entitled to equal opportunity.”

Holder told a gathering of state attorneys-general at the Justice Department that they are sworn, not just to win cases, “but to see that justice is done” and to “seize the opportunities that are before us.”

The legal system exists, he said, not just to settle disputes and punish wrong-doers, “but to answer the really fundamental questions about fairness and about equality that have always determined who we are and who we aspire to be, both as a nation and as a people.”

Holder explained that those “really fundamental questions’ prompted him and President Obama to decide in early 2011 that Justice Department attorneys would no longer defend the constitutionality of the federal Defense of Marriage Act.

Holder said he and Obama were “motivated by the strong belief that all measures that distinguish among people based on their sexual orientation must be subjected to a heightened standard of scrutiny…and therefore this measure (DOMA) was unconstitutional discrimination.”

But a group of black pastors are not taking this lying down.

CNS News explains.

Excerpt:

A coalition of black pastors announced on Tuesday at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. that they are launching a campaign to gather one million signatures on a petition calling for the impeachment of Attorney General Eric Holder for violating his oath of office by trying “to coerce states to fall in line with the same-sex ‘marriage’ agenda.”

“President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder have turned their backs on the values the American people hold dear, values particularly cherished in the black community: values like marriage, which should be strengthened and promoted, rather than weakened and undermined,” says a statement by the Coalition of African American Pastors that has been posted online with their impeachment petition.

“Our nation calls for the building up of a healthier marriage culture; instead, our elected leaders are bent on destroying marriage, remaking it as a genderless institution and reorienting it to be all about the desires of adults rather than the needs of children,” says the coalition.

“In pursuing this intention, the president and his administration are trampling the rule of law. Attorney General Holder in particular has used the influence of his office and role as the chief law enforcement figure in our nation to try to coerce states to fall in line with the same-sex ‘marriage’ agenda,” says the coaltion. Millions of voters in 30 states have voted to defend marriage as the union of one man and one woman, but Attorney General Holder is attempting single-handedly to throw those votes away!

“For abandoning the oath he swore in taking office and his duty to defend the common good, Attorney General Holder should be impeached by Congress,” says the coalition. “CAAP is calling on all men and women of good will to sign the following petition urging Congress to take action against the Attorney General’s lawlessness today!”

I am happy this sort of bold leadership from black pastors. Although 94% of black Protestants voted for Obama in 2008, and thus for gay marriage, at least there is a remnant of courageous black Protestant leaders who are still under the authority of the Bible. It makes me wonder why their defense of traditional marriage is not shared by 94% of their flocks – at least in the ballot box (where it counts). There must be some huge gulf between Protestant leaders and the laity.

Filed under: News, , , , , , , ,

Republicans introduce bill to impeach Attorney General Eric Holder

Breitbart News reports.

Excerpt:

Rep. Pete Olson (R-TX) has introduced an Articles of Impeachment resolution against Attorney General Eric Holder for his role in Operation Fast and Furious and other scandals of President Barack Obama’s administration.

Seven congressman have signed onto the resolution thus far in addition to Olson. They are Reps. Larry Bucshon (R-IN), Blake Farenthold (R-TX), Phil Roe (R-TN), Lynn Westmoreland (R-GA), Roger Williams (R-TX), Ted Yoho (R-FL), and Randy Weber (R-TX).

The Articles of Impeachment has four different sections. The first calls for Holder’s official removal because of his failure to comply with congressional subpoenas relating to Operation Fast and Furious. Holder has been voted on a bipartisan basis into both criminal and civil contempt of Congress for his failure to comply with the Fast and Furious subpoenas from House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA).

The second section of the Articles of Impeachment deals with Holder’s refusal to enforce the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the Controlled Substances Act, and the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986. The third section calls for Holder’s impeachment on the grounds that he has refused to prosecute any IRS officials involved in the “scandal of unauthorized disclosure of tax records belonging to political donors.”

The fourth section of the Articles of Impeachment goes after Holder for his involvement in the targeting of reporters. Holder testified under oath on May 15, 2013, the resolution states, that he “he was neither involved in nor had heard of a potential prosecution of the press.” Three days later, though, Holder’s Department of Justice (DOJ) “released documents naming journalist James Rosen as a co-conspirator in an alleged violation of the Espionage Act.” Holder later confirmed to Congress that he had in fact “approved a search warrant on James Rosen.”

See the links below for a review of Holder’s many failures.

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Democrats try to block whistleblower’s Fast and Furious expose

Fox News reports on the latest Democrat cover-up scandal. (H/T Dad)

Excerpt:

The ATF agent who blew the whistle on Operation Fast and Furious has been denied permission to write a book on the botched anti-gun trafficking sting “because it would have a negative impact on morale,” according to the very agency responsible for the scandal.

After first trying to stop the operation internally, ATF Agent John Dodson went to Congress and eventually the media following the death of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry in December 2010. Two guns found at the murder scene were sold through the ATF operation.

Dodson’s book, titled “The Unarmed Truth,” provides the first inside account of how the federal government permitted and helped sell some 2,000 guns to Mexican drug cartels, despite evidence the guns killed innocent people.

Dodson, who is working with publisher Simon & Schuster, submitted his manuscript to the department for review, per federal rules. However, it was denied.

Greg Serres, an ATF ethics official, told Dodson that any of his supervisors at any level could disapprove outside employment “for any reason.”

[...]Dodson says “The Unarmed Truth” will come out in January, with or without the ATF’s permission.

I hope this book sells a lot of copies.

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