Election Eve “Fast & Furious” Document Dump by Justice Dept.

It could be the ultimate Washington “document dump.”

Instead of turning over a heap of potentially damaging documents to Congress on the usual Friday afternoon as government agencies tend to do in the hope of attracting as little media attention as possible, the Justice Department turned over a massive set of documents on election eve.

The 64,280 pages of documents had previously been withheld under President Obama’s one and only claim of executive privilege of his presidency. The privilege was invoked after Attorney General Eric Holder refused to turn the documents over under Congressional subpoena and was held in contempt of Congress in June 2012.

Republicans in the House of Representative subsequently sued to obtain the materials, as did the conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch. Last night’s handover was in response to an order from a federal judge in the case. The House Oversight Committee, which issued the original subpoena, said that the newly-disclosed material covers about two-thirds of the documents withheld. A significant set of documents remains protected under executive privilege.

Read the Justice Dept. cover letter with the document production

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of House Oversight Committee

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of House Oversight Committee

“Since these pages still do not represent the entire universe of the documents the House of Representatives is seeking related to the Justice Department’s cover-up of the botched gun-walking scandal that contributed to the death of a Border Patrol agent, our court case will continue,” said Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) in a statement.

“I am deeply concerned that some redactions to these documents may still be inappropriate and contrary to the judge’s order in the case”.–Rep. Issa

In its separate lawsuit, Judicial Watch obtained, under court order, a list of withheld documents. They included emails between Holder and his mother, and Holder and his wife. Additionally, they included emails discussing my Fast and Furious Freedom of Information Act requests and my news reports on the topic.

Read all the Fast and Furious coverage

 

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