Today Attorney General Eric Holder had a 20 minute meeting with Rep. Darrell Issa about the failure of Holder to comply with subpoenas for documents in Fast and Furious.
Apparently the meeting went something like this:
Issa: Turn them over or tomorrow we will hold you in contempt of congress.
Holder: I’ll let you peek at them if you will agree before you ever see them to stop the investigation after you have seen them.
Issa: I think we are done here. We’re voting on the contempt charge tomorrow.
Holder (direct quote to the media): “The ball’s in their court. We made what we thought was an extraordinary offer.”
Imagine for a moment that you or some gun shop owner had sold and/or given thousands (not the hundreds like the article erroneously says) of guns to criminal organizations who used them to murder hundreds of people include at least one if not two government agents. After finding out about it the prosecutor lets you stay out of jail and asks you a few questions and turn over documents and emails to find out who your accomplices were. You sort of comply but just enough to avoid claims that you are completely uncooperative.
Had you told the prosecutor you would turn over some more documents on the condition they stop the investigation before they ever saw the documents, what do you think the reaction would have been?
What is extraordinary here is that Issa didn’t have Federal Marshalls rip his jacket and shirt off, tie him face down on the table, stuff a copy of the subpoena in his mouth, give him 30 lashes with a bull whip, then tell him there would be a whipping every day at 9:00 AM until he fully complied or his flesh had been stripped off and his bones were polished clean.
I understand why Issa didn’t do that but had it been me I would have being showing extraordinary restraint had I only done that in the face of that level of contempt for the law and Congress. Prohibitions against “Cruel and unusual” punishments would just seem inadequate had they been able to even just read my thoughts. “Crimes against nature, humanity, and being an inspiration to Satan” would probably come up in my trial just for a glimpse of what I would have been thinking.