The Fast And Furious Scandal, Ctd

Andrew Sullivan —  Feb 2 2012 @ 7:46pm

Ben Smith says that today's congressional hearing was "not Eric Holder's best day". Ed Morrissey focuses on the above exchange between the attorney general and the oversight committee chair, Darrell Issa:

Holder responds that he’s prepared to hold people in his organization accountable right now … for whistleblowing on the wiretap applications. Er, really?  The ATF sent thousands of high-powered weapons across the border into the hands of the cartel, which resulted in the deaths of hundreds, including a US Border Patrol agent, and Holder is ready to act right now against the people informing Congress of what actually took place in Holder’s organization?  Well, it is accountability of a sort, I suppose, but it’s more useful as a peek into Holder’s priorities.

Weigel highlights another tense exchange, sparked by a bitter question from Ann Marie Buerkle (R-NY). Robert Beckhusen zooms out:

Meanwhile, House Democrats Tuesday released their minority report pinning the blame on the Phoenix branch of the ATF and the Arizona U.S. Attorney’s Office (.pdf). Rep. Elijah Cummings, the chief author of the report, said today there is "no evidence indicating the Attorney General authorized gunwalking." These questions are crucial because Fast and Furious has not only become a huge political issue, it also determines who will take responsibility for allowing thousands of guns to move unimpeded into a war zone south of the U.S.-Mexico border. If Holder is lying, and there is no evidence to suggest this is the case, he’d be responsible for one of the biggest failures in Justice Department history.

More on the scandal's significance here.