September 19th, 2012
02:13 PM ET

Fast and Furious report finds DOJ management failures

[Updated at 2:31 p.m. ET] Fourteen employees of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the U.S. Justice Department face disciplinary action for their roles in the botched Fast and Furious weapons-tracking program, according to a report released Wednesday by department investigators. No criminal charges are recommended, according to the report.

The program was doomed by a "series of misguided strategies, tactics, errors in judgment and management failures" on the part of line agents, prosecutors and senior Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Washington, Justice Department investigators concluded in a report released Wednesday.

The report does not recommend any criminal sanctions against individuals in connection with the controversial gun-trafficking operation.

The report finds that Attorney General Holder was not informed of the controversial ATF operation until 2011 after the death of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry in December 2010.

Parents say slain agent's death exposed flaws of gun-running operation

"I have reviewed the Office of the Inspector General’s report on Operation Fast and Furious and the key conclusions are consistent with what I, and other Justice Department officials, have said for many months now: The inappropriate strategy and tactics employed were field-driven and date back to 2006; The leadership of the Department did not know about or authorize the use of the flawed strategy and tactics; and The Department’s leadership did not attempt to cover up information or mislead Congress about it," Attorney General Eric Holder said in a statement.

Read Holder's full statement

Holder said he has accepted the resignations of Kenneth Melson, the former acting director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and former Deputy Assistant Attorney General Jason Weinstein in connection with their roles in the Fast and Furious weapons-tracking program.

"Today’s report affirms the problem of gunwalking was a field-driven tactic that dated back to the previous Administration, and it was this Administration’s Attorney General who ended it," White House spokesman Eric Schultz said in a statement. "Nevertheless, The Justice Department has taken strong steps to ensure accountability and make sure this does not happen again, including important administrative, policy, and personnel changes. If Republicans still have any legitimate questions about Fast and Furious, this 450-page report answers them. In light of this thorough report and Congress’s 16 month-long investigation, Republicans have no excuse to keep wasting time and taxpayer resources on politically-motivated, election-year attacks."

The botched investigation was designed to track trafficking kingpins responsible for illegal gunrunning to Mexico. It has been blamed for contributing to crimes - including the high-profile slaying of a U.S. border agent - and has become a partisan bone of contention heading into the November elections.

The report is important because of its scope - it is the result of more than a year of research - and for its conclusions, which could stir even more partisan attacks, depending on its outcome. The report is expected to conclude whether the botched plan was mostly the doing of agents in Arizona, or if the Obama administration played a central role.

In the controversy over its handling, conservative Washington legislators voted down party lines to cite the U.S. attorney general - a Democrat - for contempt. It marked the first time in American history that the head of the Justice Department has been held in contempt by Congress.

soundoff (239 Responses)
  1. Jeff Frank (R-Ohio) "Right Wing Insanity"

    Corruption in office. So now it's acceptable to "allow" a homicide to be committed when poor planning is done "by people running in packs"?

    September 19, 2012 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
  2. legool

    As usual, flunkies will take the fall, while the higher ups walk.

    September 19, 2012 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
  3. cheech

    Eric Holder deserves an apology from the House Republicans.

    September 19, 2012 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Ind.

    It's obvious Holder is a racist and uses affirmative action in his form of justice.

    September 19, 2012 at 4:10 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Ind.

    It's obvious that democrats are OK with their administration being above the law.

    September 19, 2012 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Joe

    Do you think so
    Then you belive mitt is right when he say that you are one of 47%

    September 19, 2012 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Ind.

    Poor democrats.
    Forgive them for they not know what they do.

    September 19, 2012 at 5:36 pm | Report abuse |
  8. David

    I read the entire report . How about banning assault weapons ? Simple solution .. And for you gun enthusiasts .. Bambi isn't that dangerous or difficult to hunt and kill

    September 19, 2012 at 6:04 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Name*Ibe1978g

    The true is its not Bush or Obama its us the American people are to blame . For all the problem in America we voted every congress person in no one else did that . Salution read fine out then hopefully the right people are in congress and Salutions are found and not blamIng them who ever party you choose to blame . But I'm dreaming I know that to bad.

    September 19, 2012 at 6:35 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Jeff Frank (R-Ohio) "Right Wing Insanity"

    The DOJ huh? All these gifted legal scholars. The law running from the law.

    September 19, 2012 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |
  11. RudyG

    Funny! They ALL worked for Holder, and he is free of responsibility?? Truman said "the buck stops here". Sorry, Harry, modern Dems are not familiar with that old saying......

    September 19, 2012 at 9:02 pm | Report abuse |
  12. bigthaw

    obviously holder is a racist

    September 19, 2012 at 10:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • banasy©

      Yeah, that's apparent, isn't

      September 19, 2012 at 10:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Name s kel

      You know whats funny? Its RACISTS calling others not like them racist to deflect the fact that they(the true right wing bigot racists) are bigot non white hating fools. This is a weak,new non working right wing taticial failer.

      September 20, 2012 at 9:03 am | Report abuse |
  13. DOJ groupie

    Don't diss our entire Department of Justice based on this bs. The DOJ will save the day:
    Earlier this year, the DOJ biatch slapped The Supreme Court's opinion that using a mans se xual orientation as evidence against him is a violation of his civil liberties.
    Previouslly, openly gay men whom had been convicted of raypeing 17 yr. old males appealed their case all the way to the SC and had their convictions overturned. How can you prove it was raype without proving the perp is gay. You can't. It is a violation of a gay man's civil liberties to prove to the court he is gay.
    But now, if ANY man even so much as fondles a younger male (under 18) it is STATUTORY RAYPE according to the DOJ.
    Stick THAT in your pipe and smoke it you Supreme Court "justices".

    September 20, 2012 at 9:05 am | Report abuse |
    • Mary

      You mean the Supreme Court is finally using logic in their decision making?
      I can only go by the assumption that tying the hands of PA in such cases is giving an unfair advantage to the defense.
      We the people (PA) need to be able to link each peace of evidence together – Men rayping a male wouldn't make sense if we are talking about a head-tro. Therefore we must give evidence that the accused has a *motive* to commit the crime.
      Let me say it again ... MOTIVE see?

      September 20, 2012 at 10:09 am | Report abuse |
    • Mary

      Meant the DOJ in my first sentence

      September 20, 2012 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
  14. DOJ groupie

    Finally, gay men have EQUAL RIGHTS to be prosecuted for statutory raype.
    That "holy" man RAYPED your boy, he didn't simply molest him. He LUSTED for "tight ass" just as many straight men do.And now, thanks to our DOJ and in *spite* of The Supreme Court, we can convict him of statutory raype w/o having to prove he is gay. Instead of viewing the perp as a "sinner" or a "sick man needing help", we view him as a raypeist. Instead of the court sentencing him to probation and therapy, we sentence him to prison for at least 20 years.
    As an adult survivor of child abuse, I've been waiting on the DOJ to biatch slap the Supreme Court for most of my adult life. I'm an old man or I would throw a party, so happy I am that we can finally throw gay boy humpers in prison for raype.

    September 20, 2012 at 9:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Mary

      🙂 And we see equal right for the male survivors being able to prosecute their abusers – just as women have been able to for so long.
      Yet we still need to forge ahead in treatment centers for those survivors – there are so few resources for the male survivors – it's virtually impossible to find groups that specifically deal with male survivors issues.

      September 20, 2012 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
  15. DOJ groupie

    Since our DOJ announced the decision that boy fondleing is RAYPE, 11 Roman Catholic Archdiocese have filed for ch. 13 bancruptcy protection. Why?
    Let's examine San Diego's RC archdiocese. Last year, a court ordered 3 million dollars be paid to boy victims of The Church. Rather than pay for their transgressions, the archdiocese, a legal corporation, simply filed for bk protection.
    And so you see now the HUGENESS of openly gay clergy RAYPEING younger males. It's costing The Church so many millions of dollars, not even one of the richest organizations on earth can afford to pay the tab. HUGE PROBLEM for your Holy See pope who obviously didn't see this coming. He might have to pawn his 5000 dollar bedroom slippers. he he

    September 20, 2012 at 9:31 am | Report abuse |
    • Mary

      Filling for for ch. 13 bancruptcy protection is a joke – when they don't even PAY TAXES folks. How sad it is that we are throwing money at these inst itutions who raype your child and go onto raype you as well – having to pay for your childs (boy) therapy.

      September 20, 2012 at 10:25 am | Report abuse |
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