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  • While Obama Stonewalled Congress, His Campaign Called for Transparency

    President Obama invoked executive privilege to prevent further congressional oversight of the Justice Department’s Fast and Furious operation on the same day it bemoaned the supposed lack of transparency among some conservative non-profits.

    Jim Messina, Obama’s 2012 campaign manager, touted efforts on the campaign’s website to get Crossroads GPS, a conservative super PAC, to disclose its donors. But while Messina was hyping political transparency, Obama himself was ensuring the opacity of one of his Justice Department’s most controversial programs.

    On Wednesday morning, the president opted to stonewall the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee’s efforts to obtain documents related to Operation Fast and Furious, which facilitated the transportation of thousands of firearms across the southern border, where they were handed off to Mexican drug cartels with the foreknowledge of some top DOJ officials.

    Members of the committee were livid. “It’s a complete shock,” said Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA). “How come executive privilege could be instituted at this point when it’s never been raised in the last 18 months and it wasn’t raised last night?”

    The 11th hour move “implies that White House officials were either involved in the ‘Fast and Furious’ operation or the cover-up that followed,” said Brendan Buck, a spokesman for Speaker John Boehner (R-OH). “The Administration has always insisted that wasn’t the case. Were they lying, or are they now bending the law to hide the truth?”

    Heritage’s Todd Gaziano noted Wednesday that “executive privilege cannot be invoked at all if the purpose is to shield wrongdoing,” according to the Supreme Court’s ruling in United States v. Nixon.

    “There is reason to suspect that this might be the case in the Fast and Furious cover-up and stonewalling effort,” Gaziano adds. “Congress needs to get to the bottom of that question to prevent an illegal invocation of executive privilege and further abuses of power.”

    Obama himself accused the Bush administration of “trying to hide behind executive privilege every time there’s something shaky that’s taking place” during an interview in 2007.”

    “The mere fact that you have the legal power to keep something secret does not mean you should use it,” Obama later stated a day after assuming the presidency.

    But use it he did. While the use of executive privilege is not new, the optics of doing so while, on the same day, calling for political transparency does not lend an air of sincerity to either effort.

    Indeed, much as Obama has seemingly reversed his position on executive privilege, Messina’s call for the disclosure of super PAC donors conspicuously excluded the names of any such groups that favor the president’s reelection. The president has allowed at least four of his cabinet secretaries to attend super PAC fundraisers, even after labeling such groups a “threat to democracy.”

    Posted in Scribe [slideshow_deploy]

    8 Responses to While Obama Stonewalled Congress, His Campaign Called for Transparency

    1. Bobbie says:

      How ironic!

      His stonewalling is transparent what more could we ask for? Respecting us enough to share the truth regardless of his sensitivities? Too much? Not under dignified American leadership, it isn't…

    2. george says:

      this "garbage" is what passes as " leadership " !!!

    3. Lynette says:

      correction: Congressman is a Republican from California, not a Democrat. they do exist!! ;)

    4. Joan says:

      Wake up, America. The "real" Barak Obama is finally stepping forward for ALL to see. He is not the man you thought he was when you voted him in. Now it's up to all of us to vote him OUT.

    5. One2Stupid says:

      My government supplied almost 2000 assault rifles to drug cartels & murders. This resulted in the deaths of at least 2 Federal Agents and hundreds of Mexican citizens. Now my government tells all of us that it's none of our business, we don't have a right to know. Well, I disagree! How did the United States of America get involved is this mass murder? Who is responsible? Who are they trying to protect? I want the truth and I want it now! I'm an Indepndent, this is not a partisin issue. This an American Issue! This cover-up is Water Gate on steriods!

    6. Todd says:

      The government works for US – the citizens of the United States of America! It is time to fire them and hire somebody that has the morals, ethics and values that made this country great!

    7. Blair Franconia, NH says:

      In the immortal words of Tweety Bird, "OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOH, WHAT A HYPOTWIT!"

    8. rockncoal says:

      Is there any doubt at this point that Obama is a hypocrite and a liar? And those are probably a couple of his better traits!

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