As compelling as it was to watch Newell try to spin out of the corner he was boxed into, there was actually something bigger to come out of the hearing. It had to do with e-mails sent by Newell that Committee Chair Darrell Issa had in his possession. Those e-mails went directly to the White House.
Via CBS News:
At a lengthy hearing on ATF's controversial gunwalking operation today, a key ATF manager told Congress he discussed the case with a White House National Security staffer as early as September 2010. The communications were between ATF Special Agent in Charge of the Phoenix office, Bill Newell, and White House National Security Director for North America Kevin O'Reilly. Newell said the two are longtime friends. The content of what Newell shared with O'Reilly is unclear and wasn't fully explored at the hearing.You didn't get this from me but Newell may have unwittingly implicated the Obama administration in a scandal that involves the murder of two federal agents and countless numbers of Mexican civilians.
It's the first time anyone has publicly stated that a White House official had any familiarity with ATF's operation Fast and Furious, which allowed thousands of weapons to fall into the hands of suspected traffickers for Mexican drug cartels in an attempt to gain intelligence. It's unknown as to whether O'Reilly shared information with anybody else at the White House.
Congressional investigators obtained an email from Newell to O'Reilly in September of last year in which Newell began with the words: "you didn't get this from me."
The levee is squeaking.
Read it all.