4:18 PM, Sep 19, 2012 • By MARK HEMINGWAY
As much as it's a distraction from some inartful comments Mitt Romney made about taxes, perhaps the media might spend sometime explaining why a Justice Department official just resigned over over a report on the Fast and Furious scandal that led to the death of a border patrol agent:
A bombshell report released Wednesday on Operation Fast and Furious faulted a range of federal agencies for the failed anti-gunrunning program and accused officials in charge of a "disregard" for public safety. In the wake of the report, one Justice Department official resigned.
The sprawling report by the department's inspector general is the most comprehensive account yet on the deadly operation which allowed weapons to "walk" across the U.S.-Mexico border and resulted in hundreds of firearms turning up at crime scenes in both countries.
The report says Attorney General Eric Holder was not made aware of potential flaws in the program until February of last year. But the report cites 14 other department employees -- including Criminal Division head Lanny Breuer -- for potential wrongdoing, recommending the department consider disciplinary action against them.
It also marked Jason Weinstein, the deputy assistant attorney general for the Criminal Division, as the highest-ranking DOJ employee in a position to stop the program. Weinstein, who disputes the findings, is nevertheless resigning in the wake of the report.
This report still doesn't really answer a lot of questions about the scandal, and the fact that one official is resigning and 14 others are singled out for potential disciplinary action only makes the Justice Department's stonewalling of the congressional investigation of Fast and Furious look even worse in retrospect. Stay tuned.
10:00 PM, Jan 12, 2012 • By ADAM J. WHITE
Before 1987, Supreme Court nominations were relatively peaceful affairs. Yes, there occasionally were bursts of controversy—the appointment of progressive activist Louis Brandeis in 1916, the promotion of conservative Justice William Rehnquist in 1986—but controversy was the exception, not the rule. Justice Antonin Scalia, a known conservative commodity, was confirmed in 1986 by a vote of 98 to 0. ("The two missing were Barry Goldwater and Jake Garnes," Scalia later reflected, "so make it 100.")
1:15 PM, Sep 29, 2011 • By MARK HEMINGWAY
Over at Forbes, Frank Miniter argues that "'Fast And Furious' Just Might Be President Obama's Watergate":
Why a gunrunning scandal codenamed “Fast and Furious,” a program run secretly by the U.S. government that sent thousands of firearms over an international border and directly into the hands of criminals, hasn’t been pursued by an army of reporters all trying to be the next Bob Woodward or Carl Bernstein is a story in itself.
2:33 PM, Aug 30, 2011 • By MICHAEL WARREN
The acting director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) is stepping down from his role, according to a story at Politico. The ATF and the Justice Department have been plagued by a recent scandal surrounding the controversial "Fast and Furious" operation, which involved feds providing guns to Mexican criminals for the purpose of tracking smugglers (a practice known as "gunwalking"). ATF's interim director, Kenneth Melson, was the focus of recent congressional hearings for his role in the operation.
6:00 AM, Jun 19, 2011 • By ADAM J. WHITE
When the White House announced last week that it would not comply with the requirements of the War Powers Resolution because the Libya operation does not involve "hostilities," eyebrows arched in curiosity. Many observers questioned the administration's conclusion that America's involvement in the Libya operation no longer fit within the statute's term "hostilities."
9:46 AM, Feb 24, 2011 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
President Obama has now decided that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman, is unconstitutional. Thus, the Obama administration says that it will no longer defend that federal law in court. On the campaign trail, President Obama repeatedly asserted that marriage is a union between a man and a woman. Now, the president has apparently decided that his own view, at least when codified as federal law, is unconstitutional.
5:43 PM, Jan 24, 2011 • By DANIEL HALPER
The Wall Street Journal reports that the president "will nominate White House lawyer Donald Verrilli as solicitor general, filling a vacancy left by Elena Kagan when she became a Supreme Court justice last year, the White House said Monday." By picking Verrilli, the White House is passing over Neal Katyal, who has temporarily held the position since Kagan left for the Supreme Court.
How our new deputy attorney general views the war on terror.12:37 PM, Dec 30, 2010 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
James Cole, recess appointed this week by President Obama to serve as deputy attorney general, famously wrote an op-ed on September 9, 2002, criticizing then-Attorney General John Ashcroft. Cole argued:
4:57 PM, Oct 11, 2010 • By DANIEL HALPER
From a Washington Times editorial:
When George W. Bush appointees at the Justice Department used political considerations in hiring career employees, official Washington exploded in outrage. Yet we hear barely a peep of protest now as the Obama Justice Department does the same thing for liberal ends.