Saturday, June 1, 2013

Eric Holder: Just leave. Please.

Before I go on about Mr. Holder, I know what you are going to say:

Gary, you’re prejudice. You don’t like Eric Holder.”

Okay, I admit it. I do not like Eric Holder being our Attorney General. I haven’t liked him from the start. I opposed his being confirmed in office right at the beginning. That was because Holder, acting as then Assistant Attorney General, was the man who engineered a Presidential Pardon for Mark Rich (the biggest tax cheat in U.S. history) on President Clinton’s last day in office.  Mark Rich was a huge Democratic donor, and the whole episode was so patently political it stunk to high heaven. Eric Holder proved himself a political animal. To me that said he was entirely unsuitable to head the Justice Department which absolutely must be fully impartial and blind to party politics.

Since then Mr. Holder has worked very hard to confirm my initial opinion of him and to win more and more people over to my point of view, let’s review just a few items:

  • He refused to prosecute members of the New Black Panther Party for voter intimidation in spite of a mountain of eye witness testimony and even a video recording of them outside a polling place, in uniform and carrying night-sticks.
  • He re-opened the investigation of CIA interrogators who had been already cleared by career prosecutors. That action was repudiated by seven former CIA directors and went nowhere.
  • He pushed for a civilian trial in Manhattan for Khalid Sheik Mohammed and other 9/11 conspirators. Under Holder's direction, that process collapsed and the White House eventually assumed direct control.
  • He publicly criticized an Arizona Immigration bill and had the Justice Department file a law suit to stop it from becoming law. And then he admitted to a Congressional Committee that he had never bothered to read the seven page document.
  • He was found in “Contempt of Congress” for not releasing documents relating to the Fast and Furious scandal and investigation after those documents had been subpoenaed by Congress.
  • He told the House Judiciary Committee that he had no knowledge about "potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material." That remark may have technically been true. Rosen was targeted for conspiring to solicit classified material, not for the possibility he might expose it. So, the attorney general perhaps technically avoided lieing to Congress. A legal achievement, of sorts. Hardly the highest standard of truthfulness, however. And it was clearly misleading to Congress –and that is a violation of the law in and of itself.

In the eyes of President Obama, however, Eric Holder apparently has one particular redeeming quality: he is fanatically loyal. However, Obama's continued trust in his besieged attorney general now has produced an unwanted side effect. Eric Holder is fast losing the trust and confidence of even his Democratic supporters (and that also erodes President Obama’s popularity).

Then, as if all that were not enough -The review of Justice Department abuses relating to the press is being conducted by ... Holder. A special counsel in this case would be appointed by ... Holder. The FBI probe of the IRS scandal was ordered by ... Holder. In all these cases, the restoration of public trust depends on an Attorney General worthy of public trust. And that is just not the case.

President Obama, during his recent Naval Academy commencement address, said: "It's no secret that in recent decades, many Americans have lost confidence in many of the institutions that help shape our society and our democracy. But I suggest to you today that institutions do not fail in a vacuum. Institutions are made up of people, individuals. And we've seen how the actions of a few can undermine the integrity of those institutions."

He was not referring to his Attorney General when he made that statement. But, the comment certainly applies.

I do not know if the Attorey General is dishonest or just incompetent. It does not matter. Eric Holder is an embarrassment to the President, to the Administration and to the United States.

So, Mr. Holder, I repeat. Just leave. Please!

Live Long and Prosper...

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