Former Attorney General Eric Holder has declared that the findings of Special Counsel Robert Mueller is not the end of the obstruction inquiry but only the “beginning of obstruction.” Holder has demanded that Attorney General William Barr release the report despite the contrary precedent of Holder himself in refusing to disclose critical information in the “Fast and Furious” scandal. Holder previously declared that Mueller was certain to find criminal obstruction by Trump.
I have been a long critic of Holder whose tenure at the Justice Department was marred by political influence from his role in the Clinton pardon scandals to his defiance of Congress (leading to his being held in contempt). Whether it is his call to “kick” critics or his political actions, Holder’s record is at best checkered.
Fast and Furious was a legitimate matter for congressional oversight after the ATF arranged for illegal gun sales to Mexican drug cartels for the moronic purpose of tracking weapons. Instead, it simply gave criminals low-price, high-powered weaponry– over 2000 in number including the one used to kill Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry. There should have been no question about the obligation to share information with Congress, but Holder was defiant and encouraged Obama to assert sweeping executive privilege claims. It was part of an overall assertion of privilege by Obama that went far beyond what has been asserted thus far under the Trump Administration.
Moreover, the current Democratic leadership supported Holder after his defiance of congressional oversight authority.
Citing “substantial separation of powers concerns,” Holder insisted “I am very concerned that the compelled production to Congress of internal Executive Branch documents generated in the course of the deliberative process concerning its response to congressional oversight and related media inquiries would haver significant, damaging consequences.” Imagine if Bill Barr were to quote the same language to the Congress on the current report.
Fortunately, Bill Barr is not Eric Holder. He will do exactly what he promised he would do: disclose as much as possible.