Today: The House of Representatives voted to hold AG Holder in contempt of court for failing to respond to their subpoena, the vote was 255 yes and 67 no. [contempt]
So What now? : Now it will go before a federal court and a DOj attorney will prosecute their boss “Holder” who will claim executive privilege. Then most likely the court will dismiss the charges and the House would file suit in civil court ordering the Administration to release the documents, after that its anyone’s game. Problem is it may take anywhere from 2-5 years for this to all come out in the wash. Making this whole thing pointless after the president asserted executive privilege. Which is why many today have called the contempt hearing a witch hunt/political theater, leading to democrats walking out during the vote. [Future of charge]
Is Executive Privilege constitutional?:
According to previous Chief Justice Burger, “The concept of executive privilege is not mentioned explicitly in the United States Constitution, but it is considered to be an element of the separation of powers doctrine, and/or derived from the supremacy of executive branch in its own area of Constitutional activity.” [U.S. v. Nixon] Basically according to SCOTUS “executive privilege” is never mentioned in the constitution; however it is implied as part of the daily constitutional activity of the executive branch. To brake it down a little further even though the founders didn’t establish an executive privilege. SCOTUS viewed it as common sense that the President would tell his cabinet information in conducting conferences and that the information relayed would not be intended for others/the public. In fact if some of this information should reach the public……like I don’t know…..in the form of a leak…it could be devastating to the nations security. [Leaks]
-Yes this is obviously political why else would the contempt take place so close to the election and on the same day the Obamacare ruling was to be announced.
-Yes Rep. Issa is doing the right thing by continuing to push for these documents, yes hes doing it for political show but we should be glad that for once political show coincidentally involves doing the right thing. Many people argue that Issa should have taken Holders deal, gave Holder more time, or continued investigating before holding Holder in contempt. To those people I say, If Holder was going to give the documents he would have, in fact he repeatedly stated he wasn’t going to release the documents. Lets remember there are statues of limitations with issues like this so Issa was already operating on borrowed time.
-Executive privilege shouldn’t be constitutional, meaning conversations between the president and his staff shouldn’t be protected for the sole purpose that the conversations took place and existed. Executive privilege should only exist as a defense against freedom of press when the information sought could harm cause the country harm. However, I’m not a justice and therefore as a citizen I must yield to the SCOTUS opinion.
-If the president did know about fast and furious, then of course he needs to assert executive privilege for his own defense if nothing else.
-If the president didn’t know anything about fast and furious and only saw emails or memos at a glance then one might make a weak argument for him to exercise executive privilege.
-If the president knew nothing of fast and furous prior to the closing of the program, then he should not assert executive privilege and to do so would only rob a grieving family of the truth, closure, and ultimately the justice (no not this DOJ’s definition of justice) they deserve.
By: Milton L. Jefferson