Yesterday we discovered that Attorney General Eric Holder personally signed the search warrants targeting Fox News reporter James Rosen. That was very bad news, because President Obama is supposed to be deeply “troubled” about the whole affair, and deeply believes that “journalists should not be at legal risk for doing their jobs.” The President loves freedom of the press very, very, very much. He’s so troubled that he assigned the Attorney General to get to the bottom of it, a grueling search that lasted until Holder wandered into the men’s room and caught a glimpse of himself in the mirror.
But this is more than just a profound embarrassment for Holder and his boss, because a compelling case can be made that Eric Holder once again lied to Congress – and, unlike the Fast and Furious imbroglio, he’s not going to get out of it by claiming that he doesn’t read his email, doesn’t know what his subordinates are doing, and can only find the Justice Department because his driver and Siri know where it is.
Because Holder, in sworn testimony before Congress, said this: “In regard to potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material, this is not something I’ve ever been involved in, heard of, or would think would be wise policy.”
(Hat tip: Gateway Pundit.) Now, I may just be a simple tea-partying hobbit, not a fancy high-powered lawyer, but that seems like a rather blatantly false statement – the sort of thing we dangerously cynical tyranny-fearing government-hating don’t-tread-on-me types refer to as a “lie.”
It’s not a misstatement or a slip of the tongue. Holder has not only been “involved in” the “potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material,” but there are breaking news reports as I write this post that he not only signed the search warrants, but vetted them. Which means he can’t use the “Colonel Blake” maneuver and claim he just signed a stack of paperwork without reading it.
BREAKING: U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder vetted search warrant for reporter emails: Department of Justice – @reutersus
??? NewsBreaker (@NewsBreaker) May 24, 2013
Which leaves only one legalistic evasion for Holder: he could claim he vetted and signed the Rosen warrants without having any intention of prosecuting him, so what he said to Congress could be billclintoned into a semi-defensible statement. In other words: Oh, no, I wasn’t getting involved in any sort of prosecution. It was just a fishing expedition using a search warrant and the power of my department to harass Fox News. The President says they’re not a real news organization anyway, you know?
Or maybe he can plead temporary insanity or amnesia. In any event, it’s hard to see how he can possibly remain in office.