Issa: Obama DOJ’s Blame Bush Strategy In ATF Scandal ‘Reeks Of Desperation’

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) is trying to take the revelation that the Bush administration had a “gun walking” problem of its very own in stride.

“The committee has received some documents from the Justice Department about Operation Wide Receiver but Justice officials still have not made clear to committee investigators what did and did not take place in this operation,” spokeswoman Becca Glover Watkins said in a statement to TPM.“This far into the investigation, throwing out the ‘Bush Administration did it too defense’ reeks of desperation,” she said. “If true, it would indicate that Obama Justice officials have engaged in an active effort to deceive Congress about gun-walking they knew had taken place but had strenuously denied until only recently.”

Issa has previously said that he’d use his subpoena power to investigate President George W. Bush.

As TPM reported, ATF agents in Arizona allowed what the Associated Press said were hundreds of guns to be transferred to suspected “straw purchasers.” The operation began in 2006 and concluded in 2007, with no charges being filed.

It wasn’t until 2009 that a federal prosecutor reviewing the case for possible prosecution learned that ATF agents in Arizona let guns be transferred to suspected gun traffickers.

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) said in a statement that “whether it’s Operation Fast and Furious, Operation Wide Receiver, or both, it’s clear that guns were walked, and people high in the Justice Department knew about it. There’s no excuse for walking guns, and if there are more operations like this, Congress and the American people need to know.”