But the stonewalling continues. Congressional investigators gave the ATF until March 30 to turn over the documents they requested. But the deadline flew by, ignored in flagrant bureaucratic defiance. Now the heat is really on because the ATF defied the one committee that can do something about it. The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform has issued a subpoena for the documents it is seeking. Officials at the ATF will have to furnish the requested documents and appear in person to answer questions or risk their own incarceration. How bitterly ironic is that? These are the guys who are supposed to be enforcing our laws, not being jailed for their contempt of them.
Some observers of this scandal believe that these documents will confirm the darkest suspicions over "Fast and Furious" -- that the illicit gun smuggling was allowed and encouraged in order to drive up the number of guns recovered in Mexico that could be traced back to U.S. gun stores. Anyone interested in driving up those numbers could have only one reason: to justify new restrictions on our Second Amendment rights.
Finally, this past week saw the official filing of papers for the Obama re-election campaign. Decidedly de-emphasized by the White House, this moment nonetheless marks a turning point in the administration. Now the accounting begins.
The Obama machine is detecting a profound buyer's remorse in the ranks of its original supporters -- and who could blame them? This president campaigned to end the war in Iraq, but now he's started a new one in Libya. He campaigned to close down Guantanamo, but now he's cleared the way for accused terrorists there to face military tribunals. He campaigned to push for more gun control but didn't bother until it was evident that his administration instead was defying international law and arming drug cartels. About the only thing this president promised and did force through was a massive nationalization of health care, but now he's handing out waivers to political cronies so they don't have to comply.
Despite all this, Obama could easily win re-election as it stands today. And he will be spending the next year and a half working feverishly to guarantee this result. It may well be that the best strategy to defeat him is to ask his supporters whether they have gotten what they bargained for.
Asymmetrical Politics: Republicans Act Like an Unruly Mob, Democrats Like a Regimented Army | Michael Barone