tv Book TV After Words CSPAN June 25, 2012 12:00am-12:45am EDT
reading hazara tim ryan has just produced a book and we have a little reception for him, where he got up and spoke about his book as well. and i think it's time for advice for anyone in congress, but people in general just being in the moment and being more thoughtful with some really practical advice, but also a yank lessons in life learned from everyone from john would do -- excuse me, john wooden two presidents and to god the. ..
summer -- and i just happened to see my english teacher in high school on saturday, at an event, and of course my favorite book, and largely because of this teacher and teaching is the great gatsby, and it always makes for great summer reading, and of course, taken from the 1920s, and during the roaring 20s and the jazz age and the time of elusive -- of course the language of f. scott fitzgerald, they way he is able to write both symbolically and with mixed metaphors, and as he describes the gambler at the time eating with a ferocious delicacy. and so it's always a great read, and i hope it has some influence
on my children. in the category of favorite book and movie, of course, would be "to kill a mockingbird," and the highest honor any elected official or anyone who serves in public office would we is to be referred to as atticus finch. it was an incredible novel written by harper lee that is just still always a great read and whose lessons stay with us today as well. and another favorite, harper miller, pea the death of a salesman." that's making a great revival on broadway, and so many people, acclaimed, and the audiences are overwhelming. so those are my recommendations
for summer reading. >> for more information on this and other summer reading lists visit booktv.org. >> coming up next, book tv presents an hour-long program where we invite guest hosts to interview authors. this week, katie pavlich and fast and furious. he discuss her findings with major garrett. >> host: katie pavlich, what is the essence of this story, fast and furious. >> guest: we'll start with what the justice department and this administration claimed fast and furious would be and then we can get into what actually happened. the justice department in partnership with other agencies and departments like homeland security, claim their goal was to send and allow straw
purchasers, people who come -- >> host: straw purchasers of? straw purchasers are people who come into gun shops and buy guns for other people, transfer them to criminals criminal organizations. what this program fast and furious claimed it was going to do is allow these straw purchasers to come into gun shops in arizona, purchase these guns. they were going to surveil the straw purchases and the transfers to cartel members and trace these guns into the extensive mexican cartel effort in an effort to take down what they call the big fish in the cartel, take down the cartel network. the problem twice of these guns ended up at the murder scene of a border patrol agent and it turns out that actually they weren't tracking these guns. they sent 2500 guns into mexico on and on 2500 of them they put two g.h.a.s.p. recording
devices. doesn't sound like a very serious tracing program to me. >> host: did this program, fast and fewer house, have in the antecedents in the bush administration? that comes up a lot. was it the same program? the same intent? what are the similarities and differences? >> guest: we have heard that argument this start under the bush administration. there was a prostarted under the bush organization using straw purchasers and arresting them, stopping guys from buying guns and transferring them into mexico. they ran an prognosis called operation wide receiver, working with the mexican government, surveils guys and cartel members transferring guns into mexico, and they were saying once the guns get to the border, you pick it up from there. the problem is the mexican government dropped the ball and the program was immediately shod down. now, under fast and furious, completely different story. the mexican government wasn't
informed about the program and instead of a few hundred guns we're talking about thousands of guns with no mexican government involved to stop them, not to mention trying to actually trace them and keep them away and out of the hands and arrest the people before they were taken to violent crime scenes and used in murders. >> host: let's third the geography of the program and the results, or lack of results. this started in arizona? >> guest: yes. >> host: why arizona and what kind of firearms are we talking about? >> guest: well, arizona is a border state, and this administration, going back to the beginning, made stopping gun trafficking into mexico a top priority. if you're going to stop gun trafficking, you choose a border state to stop it. this administration was claiming that these guns that were the cartels were using were coming from mom and pop stores in america and going into mexico. now, that actually isn't the case. the state department's own cable show that these cartels are not
getting their guns from the united states. they're getting them from cheaper sources like china and central america you. go into, why was arizona chosen? on the bored, a prosecond amendment state to it's easy to believe violence on the cartels. you look at the politics and people behind the program, arizona was chosen for political reasons, not necessarily to actually stop gun trafficking into mexico. >> host: did the fact the homeland security secretary, janet napolitano, having been the previous governor of arizona, have any role in this? >> guest: absolutely. the person i think you had a very big role was actually her former staffer, his name is former u.s. attorney for arizona, dennis burke. he served as napolitano in the's staffer when she was the attorney general of arizona and served as her chief of staff while she was governor of arizona and followed her into the obama administration at her southeastern homeland securities
a individualor before president obama appointed him to u.s. attorney in arizona. he is the guy who oversaw trafficking of guns into mexico from the ground level on a doj side and the memos prove he was in full approval of the guys coming into gun shops, buying guns and sending them back to mexico. >> host: would there be a book if not for the tragedy that befell the terry family? >> guest: unfortunately probably not. this is something that was swept under the rug and kept from not only the american people but the mexican people as well. there are hubs of faceless innocent mexican citizens who have been murdered as a result of this but the only think that we knew outside of the government program was that guns from american gun dealers were going into mexico and causing all these problems with the cartel when really the government was sanctioning these sales and sending them into mexico, and so we wouldn't have known about this if we hadn't found out about brian terry's murder, and more importantly, we haven't heard from whistle
blowers and online sites talking about what atf was doing and what was coming forward and saying this is what we have didn't doing. most of us have been complaining about this to our superiors since the beginning, yet they wanted to move forward with it. >> host: what do you know and what can you tell the audience about the circumstances of brian terry's death? >> guest: well, we don't know much. the case file for him has been sealed, and the reason why the judge sealed the case file has also been sealed. but what -- >> host: wait a minute. go over that again. the file was sealed and then there is an explanatory reason from a federal judge? >> guest: federal judge. >> host: and that has been sealed. >> guest: also been sealed. that gives you an idea about the secrecy surrounding bryan terry's murder right up front. now, that night, they claim that there were two guns at the scene. you look at the documentation. so that at least two guns were left at the scene that were connected to operation -- >> y did the shoot owing cure? >> guest: in arizona, about
11 miles north of the boredder in a norrer to yourselfly dangerous drug cartel area, and it's a very remote part of the country. you can only get there by comment by foot. and it's one of those -- by helicopter and by foot, and it's an area where it's difficult to combat drug trafficking but that's where the cartels work, and if you look at the maps and the data, that's one of the hottest areas the country for cartel activity. >> host: so, what was brian terry doing there? what was his capacity? who was he working for? what -- based on what little we know, what can you reconstruct of that inning? knee was actually a marine and a police officer before he joined border patrol, and he was -- he tried out for an elite border patrol team which is kind of like the marines or the navy seals of border patrol. they do special operations they deal with the worst of the worst in terms of drug cartels coming up with weapons rather than people simply moving up north and across the border. that night they were doing their
regular run. they knew that canyon was a hot area. they had been watching these rip crews or these guys who come in and steal guns -- steal drugs from other crews in order to make a quick buck. it's easy for them that way. so they were just simply doing their job, and they come over into this capon, and they see this crew of men who were very heavily armed, and they fired beanbag rounds at them. and unfortunately -- >> host: is that standard operating procedure. >> guest: it is, according to homeland security policy. when you're dealing with guys who, as we saw three weeks ago, who are willing to leave headless, feetless, handless bodies on the side of the road, i don't think that shooting beanbags at them, you expect a friendly fire response. and that's exactly what happened. they were returned fires with ak-47s, which were given to them -- at least two of them
given to them by the u.s. government, allowed to go other into their hand deliberately by the u.s. government. >> host: through straw purchasers that were supposedly being surveilled. >> guest: exactly. and brian terry was hit and:and they're lucky more weren't killed that knight. >> host: has the family seen his body? >> host: they have. he went home the next day so they had his tune comparable did see his body. >> host: okay. how would you describe the level of satisfaction or dissatisfaction with the terry family and what they've been told and haven't been told inspire they're very unsatisfied and absolutely should be. his mother has found out most of the -- had to find out most of the information about her son's death through the very few media outlets that are actually covering this. former u.s. attorney, dennis burke, flew to michigan who visit the family and gave them the run-around and didn't give them any details. they've been denied -- dennis burke denied them victim status where they would have a claim
against the government for hurting them in the sense they allowed the sanctioning of sales that got their son killed. and so they really have no answers. josephine terry is her name, brian terry's mother, after eric holder testified in -- >> host: attorney general. >> guest: she says i don't understand why you never say my son's name, never mention him, and you don't have the -- you're arrogant. your don't have the nerve to actually mention why this happened, and speaking of the attorney general, there was a hearing in october where texas senator john cornyn asked eric holder, have you talked to the family at all? have you talked to the terry family? have you apologized for what happened? and eric holder said, no. and that was a little embarrassing, not on a level of the felt bad but on a level of public relations-wise so instead of just apologizing right away, eric holder released a letter of apology to the press before the
entiretily family was capable of reading it. >> host: does anyone in the justice department or bureau of alcohol, tobacco and firearms, homeland security, does anyone dispute that two of the firearms found at the scene of brian terry's murder, were from this program? is that key fact in dispute? >> guest: that key fact -- they're from this from is not in dispute. >> host: no one disputes that. >> guest: right. but whether this program was a direct result of brian terry's murder is in dispute and attorney general eric holder has made that point. he said it's not fair to assume that this program is why brian terry was killed. >> host: do you agree with that. >> guest: i disagree. >> host: wino the weapons left at the scene were given to these cartel members. >> host: but their well armed and through various sources they could have quite easily killed brian terry with other weapons. >> guest: they could have but
when you're sending guns guns io mexico and you have a political agenda and you're not telling the american people below it, not telling congress or the mexican government about it, nor not telling atf agents working in mexico, working blood, soaked crime scenes, they're left in the dark. when you're arming the very people who yo you claim you're fighting, bogey the borderes open and these guys are operating, there's no reason why there's a justification for them doing that. >> host: would you acknowledge that this was not the intent of the program? >> guest: to get brian terry killed? >> host: yes. >> guest: absolutely not. i'm not -- >> host: is your -- is the investigation and the documents you've seen raising questions in your mine about a coverup or about wrong intention? >> guest: i would say both. i call fast and furious a scandal with many scandals in the scandal. in terms of answering your
previous question issue don't think this was set up intentionally to get one of our border patrol agents killed, but looking at the data and no matter who you talk to whether it's a local police officer, a law enforcement at the state level, law. at the federal level, they will all tell you, you do not give guns to criminals because they kill people with them. they knew going into this that they -- who they were giving guns to, mexican cartel, who they claim were ruthless and a lot of problems in mexico with all the deaths and murders. they knew that people were going to get killed. when you give guns, 50 caliber rifles, that can take down a helicopter when you're talking about ak-47s, giving that kind of fire power to people who have no respect for human life, of course people are going to get killed. the problem witch it was, when one of our own federal agents was killed, we started asking questions because once you cross the international line there's not a whole lot of information that comes out of incomes terms of who is being kill there they
aren't documenting it anymore because it's gotten so out of control. so i would argue that, no, there was no intention to actually get brian terry killed but i say there was no respect for human life when it came to those living in mexico. >> host: what have been the -- have there been any consequences on the criminal justice side for surveilling these guns, arresting people who were the straw purchasers, or moving up the chain of command to larger cartel figures on what basis can the justice department assert a homeland security assert this program achieved other results that were beneficial or consistent with what they were set or or explained, originally? >> guest: going back to phoenix, the atf special agent in charge at the time during fact's fast and furious, bill newell, shortly after printery was killed and the guy who brought the weapons traced back to this program, he bought them in january of 2010. literally a year before brian
terry was killed. they were surveilling him, watching him buy hundreds of weapons for a year, and instead of arresting him throughout that period of a year before he could continually buy more weapons and transfer them to cartels they arrested him on december 15, 2010, the day brian terry was killed because they were panicking and had to say we need something to show why we implemented this program, because right now, we have nothing. and so instead of taking down the big fish, as they claimed they were going to do they instead arrested these mall level, low level straw purchasers who they'd been surveilling for a year, who they could have arrest immediately once they saw them make one or two sales. >> host: that arrest occurred after the killing? >> guest: the day of. within hours he was arrested. within hours he was arrested. >> host: what has come of that case? >> guest: he has been charged with lying on a form, and i believe he is serving time in prison now, but nothing to the
extent of taking down the cartel, which is what they claimed to do. >> host: have there been any other arrests? two or three other arrests and the guys -- the men at the scene of brian terry's murder scene have also been arrested. two of which have been unnamed. one of which has been named and they are now awaiting their court case. >> host: that it trial will be where, sneer. >> guest: yes. >> host: is that something you're waiting for to provide some greater degree of evidence or information about at least what happened on that -- >> guest: uh-huh. >> host: in the case of printer areys death? >> guest: absolutely. we need to know what happened that night and what's interesting is going back to the secrecy of what happened, all the border patrol agent whose with were with brian have been issued gag orders and ordered not to talk about what happened. so when you look at that and look at the inindictment of the guys who were there who were pulled the trigger and being charged with the murder of brian terry, two of their names or
redacted and we haven't been given their names. the reason for that is during fast and furious, confidential informants were being used and there's a strong possibility and the evidence shows that fbi informants or informants working for either the dea or fbi may have been responsible for actually pulling the trigger and killing brian terry. >> host: that would be a completely new and unexpected and further horrifying layer of information and -- >> guest: i'll give you another piece of evidence to support that going back to what i mention earlier. the two guns versus three. they were told there were at least two guns at the scene. there were actually three guns. three pieces offed to support that. the e-mail show they traced three weapons from the scene. the border patrol agents who have since been issued gag orders were talking to brian terries' mother at the funeral
saying there were three weapons at the escape. there is an audio recording of the lope wolf trading company owner and an atf agent who were talking on audio saying there were three weapons. >> host: this is for audience, lone wolf trading company is one of the gun merchants that was voluntarily participating in this process of selling guns in large -- in large numbers to purchasers, they had every reason to suspect were criminal? >> host: right. i'm going to get into the word voluntarily in a second. lon wolf trading company is the gun dealer the guns that were found at brian terry's murder scene were purchased. you have three pieces of evidence. three different times, showing that there were three guns at the scene. now, why would the justice department and the fbi continually claim there were two guns at the scene and say, at least two? they never said there were two. they said there were at least two? because the third gun is linked
to a confidential informant who has -- once glows the trial process was actually on the government payroll at the time that he pulled the trigger using one of the weapons trafficked into mexico on behalf of the u.s. government. >> host: that's your suspicion. >> guest: yes. and the evidence is pointing. >> host: points in that direction. >> guest: uh-huh. >> host: what has the justice department said that? they say that claim is absolutely not true. there will two guns at the scene and they say all the evidence i just mentioned should be ignored essentially. >> host: do they deny flagly, the did department, that is, that confidential informants are behind these redacted names. >> guest: the fbi hasn't really commented on it but we do know that they were using confidential informants. >> host: since this trial will surface new information, what it the scheduling on that. >> guest: we haven't been given a schedule. there's no
know. >> guest: what did the senior officials know about fast and furious while it was going on. who was responsible for signing off on wiretaps, who was responsible for thinking that gun walking into mexico was a good idea? who is responsible for not informing atf agents in mexico about the program. who is responsible sponsor not informing the mexican government and approving the trafficking of guns across the border, questions like that. the problem is, the reason why eric holder ex-attorney general, was subpoenaed, was because in
may 2011, about a year ago, testified before congress for the first time about fast and furious and was asked, at what point did you find out about operation fast and furious. at that point he said i probably learn about operation fast and furious a few weeks ago. we fast forward the fall and memos surface, five only them, showing he addressed directly to attorney general eric holder, talking about operation fast and fewer you dated july and august 2010, nearly a year before he claimed he knew for a few weeks. so,. >> host: is it clear he saw those memos? he claim his didn't. however they're addressed directly to the attorney general. >> host: any of his writing on them? >> guest: at this point there is not. >> host: that would be one way of proving he had interaction with them. >> guest: right. keep in mind his assistant attorney general, randy brewer, who briefs him on a regular basis, was signing off on wire taps for the program.
now, anyone in law enforcement knows that wire taps are the last tool in the toolbox considering they're so invasive and in order to to get a wire tap application approved you have to submit extremely detailed information about a case and the assistant attorney general, randy brewer, signed off on the wire taps on the behalf of the attorney general, not to mention there were six wire taps at least, and so it's not just one that maybe the attorney general missed. this was an extensive program, not to mention -- in the book i good back to the beginning of the obama administration and president obama, gave eric holder and his homeland security secretary direct orders to reassess gongs trafficking policy on the border and make gun trafficking a top priority. but for eric holder not have seen these memos when this is a direct order from the president of the united states just isn't true. not to mention you go back into the fall -- >> host: from your vantage point it strains credulity.
>> guest: physical. >> host: you have a high level of suspicion. >> guest: the idea he changed his testimony multiple times. we find out he was possibly and most likely briefed in july of 2010, near lay year before he claims -- >> host: at least a paper trail suggested he ought to have been. >> guest: right. he then claim is should have said i knew about it in february 2011. trying to cover his tracks on what a few weeks means. >> host: let's talk about the wire taps. event occurred this week regarding the wire taps i think are significant and i'll have you share with the audience in a few moments 'the purpose of the wire taps, were they successful, who we they wire tapping and how did that fit into the matrix of fast and furious? >> guest: so essentially they needed these wire taps in order to listen to what these straw purchasers were saying to cartel members. >> host: tapping of cell phones?
>> guest: yes. cartels use next messaging much more than they use phone calls, and so some of them people -- sources in the book said we asked them to wire tap -- add a paragraph on to the application for text messages because that what we needed but they refused to do it and we would get maybe one or two phone calls a day, if that, on the wire taps but we saw these guys in the stores that were watching on video texting back and forth. we knew they were texting how many guns they needed who way that are talking to, who the suspects were, and yet they never made the effort to actually surveil the text messages when it was obvious they were using them. so in terms of whether the wire taps were successful, they won't. we don't have any arrests of these top cart el members. there's thousands of guns, 1400 guns are still missing in mexico, and not to mention their main suspect, akosta, who was one of the heads they were trying to take down, they met up
with him multiple times and let him go. multiple times times and let hio what has the justice department said about the wire taps not covering texts and why this figure is still at large? >> guest: the justice department isn't commenting at all on anything of these things. >> host: how about local law enforcement or the feds in arizona? >> guest: the local law enforcement are saying this was the whole point. they wouldn't allow us -- petitioner on the atn phoenix at the time and has been transferred back to d.c., he was saying the justice department and the u.s. attorney's office wouldn't let us arrest anybody. we were watching guys transfer guns and over and over again. we knew where the suspects were and knew who the guys were buying guns. we enough this and the justice department refused to prosecutor. >> host: now, the wire taps and the approval of them by -- this would be deputy attorney general -- >> guest: assistant attorney general.
>> host: randy brewer. >> guest: yes. >> host: that is important the congressional investigators why? what does that tell them as far as the paper thrill -- paper trail? >> guest: you go back to when the scandal first joke the information we have, and senior level officials, including attorney general eric holder and randy brewer, said this is a low level rogue operation by a few field agents on the ground in phoenix and this is what they did. no senior officials in the justice department had any about this at all. in fact -- >> host: they were just free lansing. >> guest: essentially just going off on their own and thinking this would be a good idea for them to get credit inside the atf and doj. randy brewer signed off and approved multiple drafts of a letter signed by ronald white, i believe the deputy attorney general -- could i have the title wrong but working for the justice department. the letter said, flat out, these allegations we're gun walking into mexico are absolutely not true. senior level officials don't
know anything about this. that letter was sent to congress in february of 2011. since then, that letter had to be withdrawn from the record because it was so full of falsehoods, which is something that rarely ever happens of these high level officials, who these wire tap applications show were signing off and seeing documentation, that they actually did know about these things, and every step of the way they've been saying, no one at a high level has been involved in this. and bat year ago, the former atf acting director, who has since also been transferred to another position, said the reason they're denying this they're trying to push pressure away from political appointees in the justice department. >> host: the timing of the approve over the wire taps, march, april, may, june, july, 2010, why is that relevant? >> guest: tells us that once again -- >> host: the program is up and
rung and. >> guest: and they were -- >> host: it would undermine the contention that was rogue or free lapse operation. >> guest: mass addition to their argue. that it they didn't know anything about fast and furious until brian terries death in december of 2010. >> host: where is this heading as far as the investigator powers of congress? i know and i have read that there are threats or intimations of contempt citations which was -- requires a formal floor proceeding. where does all of this stand as far as that? >> guest: we're in a position where i mentioned earlier, attorney general eric holder ignored a bone from october 2011. >> host: on what basis, executive privilege? >> guest: he is simply ignoring and it taught the process the justice department has cited an ongoing internal investigation into operation fast and furious by the inspector general. the problem with that is up until this point the inspector gené the justice department
actually worked for attorney general eric holder during his time as u.s. attorney of want, so there's been a conflict of interest there from the beginning of this investigation. they've kind of deferred to that every single time there's questions about submitting documentation. so, the reason he hasn't submitted to the subpoena is he believes the information he has would be compromising to that investigation, and also other ongoing investigations. in terms of where we are with congress, the justice department and the obama administration have put themselves in a really tough spot. because eric holder changed his testimony multiple times in front of congress, if he complies with the subpoena to avoid contempt charges, they made a deal. congressmann eye says said if you come forward and comply with the subpoena we won't move forward with contempt charges. if holder comes forward with the information there could be many things in there that contradict what hit has been saying during his testimony. and also on the political side of things, if he comes forward and doesn't submit the subpoena,
that's going to be a black eye for this administration right before the election. so, they're kind of waiting on whether he is going to comply. we got the letter this week from chairman isis saying we have information that is very shocking and we're going to have to proceed with consequences and holding those accountable in your justice department, senior official,s, for what went on here. >> host: one thing our audience may not appreciate or may only have a general sense of, is chairman can investigate lots of things but don't always lead to a contempt citation and they don't always lead to full-throated backing from the leadership at the top of the house or the senate. explain the evolution within house republiccage ranks on this with chairman issa, speaker john boehner, and eric cantor and the whip, kevin mccarthy. >> guest: for a year -- first let me go back to where the
whole thing started. it started in the senate with senator charles grassley who started investigating this first and he kicked it over to the chairman of the oversight committee, darryl issa. it's congressman's issa's job to investigate things in congress. speaker boehner there is to kind of make issues out of things that have important evidence and backing behind them shoot be important on the house floor. >> host: to he house in general. he has a role to represent his party obviously but also the house in general. >> guest: it it's not his troll get into what each committee is doing. he takes the big issues that are important, and makes them a house issue. there's been some controversy over whether speaker boehner has been stonewalling issa's investigation, has been trying to put the brakes on this. sources say that's not true. he has been sitting back and
allowing congressmann issa to do his job. it's his job to investigate things. >> host: build a case file. >> guest: and that's what the chairman has done. brought it to he house lead leadership three weeks ago with a 64 page contempt charge and they came onboard and sent a letter the attorney general saying, look, it's time for you comply with this investigation or we're going to proceed with contempt charges and they wouldn't have done that if they didn't think this was an important topic with enough evidence to prove the attorney general's isn't complying with what congress has a constitutional duty to do which is oversee the executive branch. >> you're familiar with criticses opposite this back and your reporting and republicans saying this is all about partisanship. this is not about a well intentioned or balanced inquiry into a government screwup. this is a vendetta, something that is men to undermine the attorney general and indirectly undermine the president of the united states how do you responsibility.
>> guest: i wouldn't say this was a government screwup. you look at the testimony, look at the e-mail evidence, and this wasn't wasn't a case where thousands of guns extently ended up in the wrong hand. john dobson said we were. >> host: he is who. >> guest: a whistle blower. atm whistle blower, mandated to allow these guns into the wrong hands. this wasn't a mistake. nothing drives mull pel whistle blowers more crazy when they here is it a mistake or botched operation. they say this absolutely intentional. when this investigation first started 31 democrats sent a letter to the justice department saying -- and the obama administration saying we need transparency here. there's nothing wrong with asking questions and, yes, it's turned into what they say a political witch hundred on the democratic side because they turnedded into issues about gun control and this being political for the attorney general when
really chairman issa says i want to wrap up my investigation and i don't want to get into the political season. the terry family deserves better. this i is about thousands of guns trafficked into mexico, hundreds of people being killed in that country, and it's about the justice department not complying, and the truth is that this shouldn't be a bipartisan issue. this being some that went terribly wrong and people not take responsibility for it, not to mention, if it was a mistake no one in the justice department has been fired as a result of this. not to mention if any of -- law abiding citizen, regular joe on the street, didn't comply with a congressional subpoena, we ooh have problems and probably be thrown in jail for that. >> host: yet, have 'king been in the city for a go lock while i have experienced executive branch and congressional tussles over subpoenas, access to information, access to e-mails, access to underlying government
documents. there's a tension there and constitutionally it's not the executive branches responsibility in every case to just hand over everything to congress whenever congress takes it upon itself to ask the question. there are tension points there but there has been -- i want to make sure i go back -- there's been no assertion of executive privilege. just been lack of response. >> guest: right. exactly. so it be different if there was executive privilege being used. >> host: then you have underlying case law and other things, precedential basis you have some idea of where the assertion of executive privilege would fall. >> guest: right. >> host: against history. that has not happened. >> guest: we have not seen that. the white house is trying to keep their hand off of this even though they have had their hands in the operation in terms of e-mails that were being sent to national security advisers in the white house about fast and furious. so they kind of tried to step back and say, president obama is standing by eric holder with full faith and confidence.
but they've kind of tried toying nor this and the justice department has tried to ignore it as well and everytime that the oversight committee says they're not complying, they come back with, we are complying. >> host: just nose as speedily as you prefer. >> guest: but also they claim that they've submitted documentation. well, so 7,000 pages seems like a lot until you look at what it is, and you look at the kind of information that they're redacting and it says, upcoming policy some legislative developments. that something as a taxpayer you should know about because you're paying for it. it's something that affects taxpayers. right? and americans in general. why would they be redacting that information? it's not all very highly sensitive information about sources or ongoing investigations. it's about policy, and so, no, they just haven't responded, and attorney general eric holder has said, look, i've testified seven times in front of congress about this. aren't you satisfied? well, we're not satisfied
because he hasn't been giving us answer. gives the same nonanswers and same noncompliance, and he made it very clear in february, when he testified, that he wasn't going to give anymore information about this. you're not complying. you're stonewalling. you look at the numbers and the evidence, and we're just not getting anything out of this administration when it comes to the promise of being transparent. >> host: you said a moment ago we're not satisfied. as you approach this story in the sense of alignment with chairman issa and chairman -- senator grassley? do you feel like you're an active participant in the investigator -- do you have skin in this game intel electric tombly? >> guest: i am just a regular person who thinks this is wrong and i talked to a lot of democrat's have said fast and furious needs to be investigated further. pack it out, fox news contributor said he doesn't
understand why people haven't asked for eric holders impeachment and contempt charges. this isn't a bipartisan issue but in terms of skin in the game i'm not fighting with chairman issa or senator grassley. i'm look testified of the justice department not complying with freedom of information act, sending back blank pages of information-not responding to e-mails about inquiries, sending reporters to sources like media matters, for information about fast and furious rather than submitting their own documentation and saying, this is what we have from the justice department. and so that's where it comes down to, where are we getting our information from? and it's not really chairman issa and senator grassley are giving us this information. we have the documents. i talked to so many people in arizona. i traveled back to arizona. i talked to many different whistle blowers who are participate in fast and fewer yourself while it was going on.
it's about the evidence here, not about partisan politics. >> host: now, if there's no contempt -- if the leadership decides we're not going to proceed with a contempt citation and the justice department continues to slow-walk this, from your vantage point, they say they're complying -- where does this go? what is the terminus of this story? does it come to any resolution before the election? >> guest: i think it will. i think if it doesn't go up to attorney general eric holder or homeland security secretary janet napolitano before the election, i think the senior officials around at least attorney general eric holder will be seeing some consequences and we saw that this week. i haven't seep the wire tap applications. i don't know exactly what they say. there's probably reason why they didn't release them publicly. >> host: that is to say chairman issa and other republican investigators, did not release them. >> guest: right. the oversight minority