“Instead of bringing the bipartisan ‘change’ to Washington that he promised voters, Barack Obama is rewarding yet another one of his political loyalists in Eric Holder. The only person who thinks Eric Holder represents ‘hope’ is Marc Rich.”
– Amber Wilkerson, RNC Spokeswoman
If you liked Janet Reno’s Justice Department, you’ll love Eric Holder’s.
But first, full disclosure: This writer was the last Republican nominee to run against Janet Reno in Miami for State Attorney in 1988. She went to Washington in 1993 to become Clinton’s third choice as nominee for Attorney General, serving in that office longer than anyone else, with Eric Holder as her #2 for the last four years.
Despite Holder’s claim that he had little if anything to do with Clinton’s pardon of fugitive/campaign contributor Marc Rich, House Government Reform Committee chairman Rep. Dan Burton concluded, in a 476-page 2002 report covering 177 Clinton pardons, that Holder had played a significant role in facilitating the Rich pardon.
Earlier this year, the Republican National Committee and Human Events blew the whistle on Eric Holder’s key role in the pardons of Puerto Rico’s FALN terrorists. That item from Holder’s bio does not bode well for the War on Terror.
Count, then, on a full-court press by an Obama/Holder Justice Department to return to the bad old Reno days when terrorism was considered a criminal justice problem and not a national security and defense problem. In June of this year, while serving as the head of Obama’s veep search team, Holder told the American Constitutional Society, “Our needlessly abusive and unlawful practices in the ‘War on Terror’ have diminished our standing in the world community….For the sake of our safety and security [emphasis added], and because it is the right thing to do, the next president must move immediately to reclaim America’s standing in the world as a nation that cherishes and protects individual freedom and basic human rights.”
This Holder pronouncement that we can curry favor in the world should be read in light of today’s Al-Qaeda’s pronouncement today calling Obama a “house slave” to white interests and Israel. Maybe Obama and Holder need to be even nicer to our enemies than they have already indicated.
Defenders of the Second Amendment who “cling to their guns or religion,” as candidate Obama charged, should get ready to cling tightly to the Constitution’s Second Amendment under Attorney General Holder. With Holder in no official office and thus with no absolutely no duty to do so, he nevertheless joined the Reno-led “Former Department of Justice Officials Amicus Brief” in D.C. v. Heller which urged the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold the handgun ban. The ban was overturned 5-4.
Holder’s admirers, who claim he will be fiercely independent as Attorney General in resisting political pressure from the White House, need to explain the Charles LaBella fiasco. This was how the story was reported by CNN in 1999:
“Charles LaBella, the former lead prosecutor of the Justice Department’s campaign finance task force who urged the appointment of an independent counsel to investigate alleged Democratic fund-raising abuses in the 1996 campaign, is quitting the Justice Department.
LaBella says he is leaving his post as interim U.S. Attorney in San Diego because he believes Attorney General Janet Reno and her deputy, Eric Holder, want different leadership in the job.”
One of the alleged “fund-raising abuses” that LaBella insisted be must fully investigated was the alleged transfer of missile and nuclear technology by the Clinton Administration to China in exchange for campaign contributions to the DNC. This was known as “Chinagate” at the time.
With Clinton about to be impeached, House Judiciary Majority Counsel David Schippers dispatched his two lead impeachment investigators to Miami to interview this reporter, so convinced was Schippers that Reno and Holder were covering up “Chinagate.” I gave Schippers what he expected to hear about Reno, based upon what I knew of her here. Holder should be asked about LaBella and Chinagate at his confirmation hearings, if he winds up being the nominee.
Proof that Holder may hit some partisan turbulence in his Senate confirmation hearings is that the Obama team has floated a possible Holder nomination to Senate Republicans to see if they’ll cause trouble.
Those who remember the treatment of George W. Bush’s AG nominee John Ashcroft by Senate Judiciary Committee Democrats might do well to consider that turnabout is fair play. However, the GOP has never shown itself willing to play by the Democrats’ hardball confirmation rules. Democrats have known how to “Bork” nominees, and Republicans have not.
Holder would probably prevail at Senate confirmation hearings, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be entertaining. And who knows, things might be learned and promises might be extracted should some Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee take seriously his “advice and consent” duty as to Presidential nominees found at Article II, Section 2, Clause 2 of the United States Constitution.
Some in the Senate might do well to consider the Holder confirmation hearings as spring training batting practice for the regular season Obama Supreme Court Justice nominations yet to come.