It looks like we’ll avoid the leftist dream of the
prior administration’s Attorney General being “frog-marched” to jail, as House Oversight Committee chairman Darrell Issa has granted the Justice Department’s request to have more time to turn over documents relating to the Fast and Furious gun-walking plot.
A key congressional Republican who had threatened to bring a contempt citation against Attorney General Eric Holder if he did not comply with a demand for “Operation Fast and Furious” documents by 5 p.m. Thursday, has backed off his stated deadline.
House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-California, who has the backing of the committee’s Republican majority, has granted a Justice Department request for an extension. No new deadline was set.
The Justice Department did not dispute the committee statement.
An aide to Issa said the congressman was satisfied that Holder had shown some flexibility on the documents issue in his testimony before the committee a week earlier. However, the aide added, “They won’t have forever.”
It is a little surprising that Issa granted Holder more time. Justice already has a ready-to-go file of documents, the same documentation that they turned over to Inspector General Cynthia Schendar. Consider the extensive amount of time Justice has already had to review these documents, turning them over to Oversight should have been little more complicated than pressing “send.”
This is going to lend credence to people already suspicious of the process (and of an alleged “fix” from Speaker of the House John Boehner), and frankly I can’t blame them, even though the most logical reasons to give Holder a little more time are to entirely of a practical if political nature for the Republicans, who can cite the fact they they “reasonably” responded to an extension when asked for it when they decide the time has come to finally play hardball, and push the entire issue even closer to the 2012 elections.