Here, you are urged and encouraged to run your mouths about something important.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

As Suspected, DOJ IG and Eric Holder Quite Cozy with One Another

Ever since the Department of Justice or White House first had to start answering questions about the Fast and Furious scandal earlier this year, there has been ONE default response when those questions got a little uncomfortable. That response is that the DOJ Inspector General has been assigned the task of conducting an investigation. In essence, the IG was appointed sentry in front of the stonewalls. Yes, the IG is supposed to be independent but it rarely seems to work that way, especially in this administration (think Gerald Walpin).

Last month, reason for increased suspicion about acting DOJ IG Cynthia Schnedar reared its head when it was learned that she sent recorded audio tapes that implicated the ATF, to the Arizona's US Attorneys office without ever listening to the tapes herself. This act demonstrated that she was likely more interested in aiding the DOJ than in investigating it.

There's much more and Ronald Kolb over at American Thinker has found it:
It turns out that Ms. Schnedar has long and close ties to Mr. Holder. According to her biography on the Justice Department website, she became assistant U.S. attorney in Washington, D.C. in 1994. Eric Holder had become the U.S. attorney in Washington the previous year, so he in effect was Schnedar's boss from 1994 until 1997, when he left to become President Clinton's deputy attorney general. Holder would become a key player in the scandalous pardons of fugitive billionaire Marc Rich and members of the Puerto Rican nationalist terrorist group known as FALN.

But during Ms. Schnedar's tenure before Holder had departed, it happened that they had ended up working a number of cases together. According to the LexisNexis website, there were at least fourteen of them, usually at the appellate level. For Holder, it was more than just "in name only"; in some of those cases, they apparently co-filed legal briefs.

In one case, they had represented the ATF. In another, they represented both the ATF and DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration), an agency that has now also been linked to Fast and Furious.
As mentioned, whenever someone in authority at DOJ or the Administration is asked tough questions, they defer to Schnedar. Even Obama has done this more than once. Are we to believe the president doesn't know about this conflict of interest? Kolb interestingly raised four very salient points relative to Schnedar:
There are several questions about Ms. Schnedar that beg to be answered.

First, as she well knew, the U.S. attorney's office in Phoenix was also a target of the investigation. Both the U.S. attorney and the assistant U.S. attorney have since left because of the scandal.

Second, should Ms. Schnedar have immediately recused herself from the Fast and Furious investigation because of her long and deep ties to Mr. Holder?

Third, when Ms. Schnedar began her employment as assistant U.S. attorney in Washington in 1994, was it Mr. Holder (then the U.S. attorney) who hired her?

Lastly, Federal Election Commission records show that Schnedar donated to the Democratic National Committee in 2005. Does she now think that was proper?

On a related note: I recently contacted Ms. Schnedar to ask those very questions. She angrily told me to call her office. No answers have been forthcoming from either source, including her spokesman, Jay Lerner.
There is an air of invincibility when someone reaches the level of Attorney General. Erich Holder has demonstrated in the past that he has it. As this scandal continues to unravel, he may be in the process of losing it, as well he should be. His coziness with Ms. Schnedar is a big concern but it is by no means the biggest relative to Holder and this scandal. In fact, we may be witnessing the early stages of him being thrown under the Obama bus. It's that bad.

Read it all.

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