Rep. Issa sends AG Holder scathing letter about Fast and Furious
Fallout continues on botched gunrunning operation
Reporter: Claire Doan
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV/AP) – A top republican says he will soon issue more subpoenas to the Obama Administration to get to the bottom of Operation Fast and Furious, the botched gunrunning program out of Phoenix.
House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chair Darrell Issa sent Attorney General Eric Holder a scathing letter Monday, responding to Holder’s claim that he was unaware of the Fast and Furious because his staff failed to inform him specifically of the program.
“At best, this indicates negligence and incompetence in your duties as Attorney General. At worst, it places your credibility in serious doubt,” Issa wrote. "The Department has actively engaged in retaliation against multiple whistleblowers, and has, on numerous occasions, attempted to disseminate false and misleading information to the press in an attempt to discredit this investigation."
"The facts simply do not support any claim that Fast and Furious did not reach the highest levels of the Justice Department. Actually, Fast and Furious did reach the ultimate authority in the Department – you," Issa wrote.
This comes as the LA Times reports that forty weapons were found at the home of purported violent drug cartel leader in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.
“We want to know what they knew and when they knew it. More importantly, we have to understand – at what level of authorization really come?” Issa told FOX News Sunday, in explaining the purpose of his subpoenas.
The family of fallen Customers and Border Protection Agent Brian Terry is also waiting for answers. Two of the guns from the Fast and Furious wound up at the scene of his shooting last December. An attorney for the family told 9 On Your Side the Terry family fears Brian was killed by a gun that his very own government put in the hands of criminals.
“They’re being haunted by these additional, continued disclosures about the weapons being allowed to walk and, of course, all the disclosures coming forthcoming during the congressional investigation,” said Phoexnix attorney Pat McGroder.
To be sure, there has been political carnage: resignation from the former ATF director, a major shake-up at the agency and Holder being under fire from critics and lawmakers. Documents from the DOJ showed Holder was told about the operation as early as July 2010.
However, when he testified before Congress in May, he said “I’m not sure of the exact date, but I probably heard about Fast and Furious for the first time over the last few weeks.”
As lawmakers look for answers and accountability, the Terry family continues looking for closure.
“It’s a constant source of agony and consternation for the family and frankly they’re not going to rest until all of their questions are answered,” McGroder said.