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Darrell Issa Pushes For 'Operation Fast And Furious' Details

At Issa's urging, Attorney General Eric Holder says his department is prepared to turn over documents.

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Vista), who represents Lake Elsinore, is apparently getting some answers by Monday to his questions about Operation Fast and Furious.

The Associated Press is reporting that Attorney General Eric Holder is proposing to meet with Issa by Monday to settle a dispute over Justice Department documents the congressman is demanding on the flawed gun-smuggling probe.

Holder says his department is prepared to turn over documents detailing how Justice Department officials came to the realization that federal agents in Arizona had used a controversial investigative tactic that resulted in hundreds of illicitly purchased guns winding up in Mexico, many of them at crime scenes, according to The Associated Press.

In a letter to Issa, the attorney general says the information he is prepared to provide will fully address concerns of the congressman and House Republican leaders, according to The Associated Press.

On June 6, Issa, who is the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, confronted Holder with new documents allegedly showing that senior Justice Department Officials in Washington were given specific information about “reckless tactics” used in Operation Fast and Furious.

Fast and Furious was a sting operation undertaken by U.S. officials whereby guns were sold to smugglers. In theory, the sales would lead to large-scale busts of Mexican drug cartels and arrests of their high-ranking officials. However, as of fall 2011, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee reports there were no high-level arrests made, despite the five-year sting operation. Instead, the committee argues guns recklessly fell into criminal hands in Mexico. As reported by myriad news agencies, two of the weapons were recovered at the scene of the slaying of a U.S. border agent, Brian Terry.

Wiretaps utilized in Operation Fast and Furious were intended to allow U.S. investigators in Arizona to listen in on phone calls of suspects. According to a document from the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, six applications for wiretaps, which have been sealed by a federal judge, detail specific actions taken by agents in Operation Fast and Furious. “This includes conscious decisions not to interdict weapons that agents knew were illegally purchased by smugglers taking weapons to Mexico,” the Oversight Committee contends.

Information contained in the wiretaps had been subpoenaed by the Oversight Committee, but the Justice Department had refused to turn them over to investigators. 

Issa alleges that Holder is misleading Congress about both the contents of the wiretap applications and details of who knew about and gave approval for sting tactics. 

“While refusing to produce the subpoenaed documents, Holder has previously denied knowledge of and cast doubt on the possibility that the wiretap applications contained information about reckless tactics,” Issa contends.

Jeff Walters June 16, 2012 at 05:41 AM
Elected officals should be paid based on their performance which is judged by the people every six months or every year. no appointed oversight commitee to review the numbers. We vote, period. You don't work, you don't get paid. Take away thier money and they will listen! Very simple idea, now is someone going to do it? Most likley not and I don't have 3.5 million dollars to start this idea rolling.
Antonio June 16, 2012 at 03:32 PM
I think about 25% of the eligible voters actually voted in the recent June 5, 2012 elections. What does this say about us? The U.S. has a "representative democracy" system not a direct democracy. If the voters are really upset about the bad politicians then why are more voting? I think a lot of Americans are not focused on government or on their their elected officials. We need to focus on education/training of young people so they understand the importance of knowing how government works.
TVOR June 16, 2012 at 04:09 PM
Someone has to bring this kind of stuff to light. Reghardless of his motivations ( I think he is simply doing what is right for his constituants) he is doing the right thing and he should be applauded for it.
Antonio June 16, 2012 at 10:33 PM
Lets shed more light then, Operation Fast and Furious was started under the GW Bush administration.
Antonio June 21, 2012 at 12:06 AM
Watch CSPAN so you can understand that Issa's probe is a partisan witch hunt during an election year. Don't be duped. The information that Issa has requested Attorney General Eric Holder to release cannot be released because the law specifically prohibits its release. The former director of ATF has notified Issa he will testify that even he did not know about Operation Fast & Furious but Issa won't subpoena his appearance. Issa doesn't want to get to the truth he justs wants to keep up the appearance of investigating wrongdoing. Political grandstanding. If you support Issa you get what you deserve.

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