The first shoe has dropped in the Republicans investigation into the ‘Fast and Furious’ scandal. The GOP report names five ATF officials for the disastrous gun walking program that oversaw the sale of nearly 2,000 guns to buyers for Mexican drug cartels and contributed to the death of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry. Up next will be the House commencing legal action against Attorney General Eric Holder to enforce the Contempt of Congress charges. Also, a second of the three reports that is expected to look at the alleged breakdown in management within Department of Justice headquarters with a special focus on the deputy attorney general’s office and the DOJ’s criminal division.
Republican investigators pinned the failures of “Operation Fast and Furious” on five officials in the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in a scathing joint congressional draft report issued Monday evening.
The 211-page draft report, obtained by The Hill, called on the Obama administration and the Senate to bolster the leadership of the ATF — which has been without a permanent director for six years — in order to move beyond the failed gun-tracking operation that led House Republicans to place Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress last month.
Specifically, the report pins blame on former Special Agent in Charge of the Phoenix Field Division William Newell, former Deputy Assistant Director for Field Operations William McMahon, former Assistant Director for Field Operations Mark Chait, the former Deputy Director William Hoover, and former acting ATF director Kenneth Melson.
When will Eric Holder step down before or after the 2012 elections?