Judical Watch Sues for Info About Fast and Furious Connection to White House

Posted: Jun 18, 2012 12:15 PM

Judicial Watch, an organization dedicated to busting government corruption, has filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The lawsuit, Judicial Watch v. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, seeks all communications records between ATF officials and Kevin O'Reilly, former Obama White House Director of North American Affairs at the U.S. National Security Council.

“The Obama administration has clammed up on Fast and Furious.  We’re having trouble getting almost anything out of them.  No wonder, as the Fast and Furious lies and killings makes it one of the worst scandals in recent American history.  The American people deserve to know what White House officials knew and when they knew it,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.

As a refresher, former Special Agent in Charge of the Phoenix ATF Field Office Bill Newell, where Fast and Furious took place, admitted in congressional testimony in July 2011 that he was longtime friends with O'Reilly and was feeding him information about Operation Fast and Furious. The White House first denied knowing anything about the operation and now argues that although emails show communication about Fast and Furious, nobody at the White House had any knowledge of gunwalking tactics used.

O'Reilly, however, isn't the only White House national security staffer who received information about Operation Fast and Furious.

The supervisor of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives operation in Phoenix specifically mentioned Fast and Furious in at least one email to a White House national security official, and two other White House colleagues were briefed on reports from the supervisor, according to White House emails and a senior administration official.

He identified the three White House officials who were briefed as Kevin M. O'Reilly, director of North American Affairs for the White House national security staff; Dan Restrepo, the president's senior Latin American adviser; and Greg Gatjanis, a White House national security official.

Yes, President Obama's senior Latin American adviser was briefed, but Obama claims he knew nothing about the program until the murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.

Meanwhile, contempt charges for Attorney General Eric Holder are still looming and ATF whistleblower John Dodson is anything but satisfied with the progress of the Fast and Furious investigation. Dodson has faced retaliation from ATF and the Justice Department for publicly exposing this lethal program after objecting to it for months while it was active.