John on September 21, 2011 at 2:32 am
This is a long post but hopefully not too meandering. I’ve transcribed the portions of the audio tapes I want to highlight so you don’t actually have to take time to listen to them.
The audio doesn’t tell you everything you’d want to know but it does tell you a lot. The woman in this clip is an ATF agent. The man is a gun dealer who, on ATF authority, sold many of the guns in question to cartel straw buyers.
From early in the clip we see that there an attempted cover up afoot:
Gun Dealer: [Sen.] Leahy as we both know has adjourned this inquiry right now okay with no plans to reconvene it. So your people were successful on that end.
ATF Agent: Right.
Later in the clip we learn that this adjournment was the result of a presentation:
ATF Agent: I know there was a presentation given to Judiciary committee and everybody aside from [Sen. Chuck] Grassley is is satisfied. At least at this point.
But Sen. Grassley was clearly a concern:
ATF Agent: I mean at some point they’re gonna say have to say Grassley you’re just gonna have to sit your ass down. I mean that or they’re gonna have to hold a hearing. I mean my understanding is he can’t call a hearing. Somebody from the majority party has got to call a congressional hearing and as of right now…
She’s cut off as she says something like “there’s no interest.” CBS has made another clip available which has different parts of what appear to be the same discussion. Again, you can listen or skip to the transcript below:
ATF Agent: My understanding is…the only people that can request a Congressional hearing have to be in the majority party. Grassley is a Republican.
Gun Dealer: I know.
ATF Agent: And as of right now…
Gun Dealer: In the Senate. Right.
ATF Agent: As of right now we don’t have any interest from anybody in the majority party to the extent that he has shown interest. So even if he wanted to at this point, unless he gets somebody from the majority party to jump onboard, he can’t.
That part I bolded tells you a lot, doesn’t it? Democrats had no interest in this story even after the death of a US border agent.
Fortunately, Senator Grassley did not sit his ass down, he continued to be a problem for the ATF and Eric Holder. In mid-February he sent a letter to Holder demanding documents related to Fast and Furious, pushing the investigation.
Now with all this in mind consider what may be the real bombshell in these tapes. Here’s the gun dealer speaking of AG Eric Holder:
I tell you what I’ll give him that, he’s got balls making that statement. I don’t want to even go there.
In context the implications is that Holder is really putting himself out on a limb making a statement which could come back to bite him. Holder did testify in Congress on March 10th, but those comments didn’t seem especially bold on their face. He said gun walking was wrong and that he had told the ATF not to do it. Nothing Holder said was ballsy, if we assume it was all true. If, on the other hand we consider the possibility that Holder was intentionally lying to Congress, then the Gun Dealer’s comments make a lot more sense.
Is there another plausible explanation? Perhaps, but the general aura of coverup in these tapes is positively Nixonian. They were looking to see this story die. Holder was their champion in this effort and they thought he was putting himself at risk to speak out about it. I don’t see a lot of innocent conclusions that can be drawn from those facts.