Skip to comments.RECORD SHOWS ISSA’S CRITIC A ‘DEM DEFENDER,’ NOT LEGIT WATCHDOG
Posted on 07/19/2012 2:51:07 PM PDT by marktwain
Given that just about everybody agrees that government openness is essential to a healthy democracy, why would a self-styled government watchdog group go after a congressman for leaking information about a scandal that indisputably has been covered up by high-ranking government officials?
The logical answer is that the watchdog group is just another one of the front groups set up by Democrats and Republicans alike to pursue and defend their interests.
Which brings us to Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Vista, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) has filed an ethics complaint against Issa, saying he should be held in contempt of Congress for placing in the Congressional Record information from a 2010 wiretap application filed by federal agents that detailed how drugs were illegally taken into Mexico in the botched Fast and Furious program. The backdrop to Issas leak is this incontrovertible fact: The Justice Department deceived Congress in February 2011 about its top officials involvement in Fast and Furious and stood by its lies for most of the year.
CREW Executive Director Melanie Sloan acknowledges Issa may be immune from sanctions for disclosing the information in the Congressional Record, but says he has no legal authority to discuss this confidential information with reporters. In an email in response to questions from a U-T editorial writer, Sloan strongly defended CREWs integrity and said its complaint about Issa was consistent with its past concerns about the illegal disclosure of classified government data, such as the WikiLeaks case, in which hundreds of thousands of internal U.S. government documents were released on the Internet.
But any attempt by Sloan to pretend CREW is apolitical is destroyed by CREWs record and her own. Most of the people and institutions that CREW has targeted are Republicans, including virtually all its most high-profile cases. Heres an example that defines what CREWs about: In 2008, it filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission over the Republican National Committees decision to pay for clothes for vice-presidential nominee Sarah Palin and her family. $150,000 could fund three Alaska teachers yearly salaries; library books for the Juneau, Alaska, School District for nearly two years; health care premiums for 31 working Americans or 12 families, CREW wrote. That is an effective partisan sound bite. It is not a legal argument.
Most telling of all is a Politico article from November 2010, after Republicans regained control of the House. Headlined Sloan becomes Dem defender, it was about her decision to leave CREW to go to work for former Clinton aide Lanny Davis law firm to thwart Issa. The industry of congressional investigations that the Republican Congress and especially Congressman Issa seems to be committed to means that a lot of people are going to need Melanie Sloans special skills, Davis told Politico.
Sloan ended up staying as CREWs leader. But the truth is that before, then and now, she and CREW remain Dem defenders. If that requires abetting an Obama administration cover-up, no problem.
Gunwalker / Murdergate ping.
obama’screw and lannie davis eyes/ ping