Obama and Executive Privilege

As I noted a few days ago, Republicans are aching to impeach somebody and President Obama has decided to help them along:

A House committee voted to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt Wednesday for not releasing documents related to Operation Fast and Furious, a botched gun-tracking operation in which federal agents permitted Mexican drug smugglers to buy thousands of firearms that were eventually used in crimes.

The invocation of executive privilege or  state secrets is often used to hide something embarrassing or incriminating, so it should be used only in rare situations and this is not one of them.

As you think about the operation Fast and Furious (the ideas behind it originated under President Bush), remember the reasons behind it. There is a huge drug war going on in Mexico being fueled by the US in two ways: most of the drugs go to the US; many of the guns come from the US. Given that, there is a lot of pressure from Mexico to do something about US guns making their way into Mexico. The sensible thing to do would be to crack down on the ability to buy guns in the US, but imagine what the NRA or Republicans would say about that. So instead we got Fast and Furious.

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