Nevertheless, few are mourning. Power Line's John Hinderaker:
Holder has been a poor Attorney General. He will be remembered for Fast and Furious, consistently stonewalling Congress, and “civil rights” activism–which, however, had little to do with civil rights. Holder promoted gay marriage, refused to defend the Defense of Marriage Act, and did his best to enable voter fraud. He was a loyal Democratic Party foot soldier–conservatives aptly called him the Obama administration’s scandal goalie–but it is hard to think of any positive accomplishment during his nearly six years in office.W. James Antle III at The National Interest:
Let us count the ways Holder has generated bad press for his boss. There is Operation Fast and Furious, a gun-running scheme that allegedly began as an elaborate sting operation to allow firearms straw purchasers to lead authorities to major gun traffickers. It ended up with the feds losing track of the guns, which were subsequently used in crimes—including murder—in both the United States and Mexico.But it is former DOJ attorney J. Christian Adams who has the masterpiece:
The death of federal agent Brian Terry blew the lid off Fast and Furious. In February, one suspect received a thirty-year-sentence for Terry’s murder. But the story remained safely marginalized in the conservative media, with the exception of dogged reporting by Sharyl Attkisson, formerly of CBS.
Despite representing the most transparent administration in history, Holder was widely accused of stonewalling congressional investigations into Fast and Furious. He was eventually held in contempt of Congress by the House, to which he responded by claiming to be a victim of partisan persecution.
Not long before news of his resignation came down, a federal judge denied a Justice Department request to delay the release of documents pertaining to Fast and Furious. The Obama administration had asserted executive privilege over the documents.
While Operation Fast and Furious was dismissed as a right-wing concern, Holder had no such luck with the Associated Press scandal. The attorney general was intimately involved in the seizure of phone records for more than twenty lines belonging to the AP. His Justice Department dug through the personal emails of Fox News’ James Rosen.
“Search warrants like these have a severe, chilling effect on the free flow of important information to the public,” First Amendment lawyer Charles Tobin told the Washington Post. “That’s a very dangerous road to go down.” The veracity of Holder’s testimony to Congress about the intention and scope of its reporter probes has been widely questioned.
The Holder Justice Department earned a reputation for being aggressive in the enforcement of laws it liked and more selective when it involved policies with which the administration disagreed (immigration restrictions, the Defense of Marriage Act).
Holder initially resisted congressional efforts to get more information about the Obama administration’s policy of extrajudicial killings for counterterrorism purposes. Did this include Americans on U.S. soil? And if so, under what circumstances? This led to the filibuster of CIA chief nominee John Brennan and a national debate on drones.
Holder, the first African-American attorney general, was far quicker than his boss, the first African-American president, to racialize national controversies. He was far less measured in his comments about the police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. He famously called America a “nation of cowards” with regard to race.
“Though this nation has proudly thought of itself as an ethnic melting pot, in things racial, we have always been and I believe continue to be, in too many ways, essentially a nation of cowards,” Holder told Justice Department employees.
Conservative columnist Michelle Malkin retorted that Holder’s proposed dialogue “means the rest of us shutting up while being subjected to lectures about our insensitivity and insufficient integration on the weekends.”
Our country is more polarized and more racially divided because of Eric Holder. He turned the power of the Justice Department into a racially motivated turnout machine for the Democratic Party. That was his job in this administration, and he did it well.Years ago I had the misfortune to be involved in a conference call with Eric Holder. I have spent most of my life dealing with politicians and lawyers. I cannot recall ever dealing with any politician or lawyer so pompous, arrogant, condescending, and self-important as Eric Holder came off in that call. Fortunately, even though most of the Republicans in the Senate rolled over for Holder -- Richard Lugar, I'm looking at you; your vote to confirm Holder by itself justified your removal from office -- some in the otherwise spineless GOP were willing to stand up to him:
When I first reported on the racially motivated law enforcement of Holder’s Justice Department, it seemed fanciful to some. But after six years of Holder hugging Al Sharpton, stoking racial division in places like Florida and Ferguson, after suing police and fire departments to impose racial hiring requirements, after refusing to enforce election laws that protect white victims or require voter rolls to be cleaned, after launching harassing litigation against peaceful pro-life protesters, after incident after incident of dishonesty and contempt before Congress — after all this, it was clear to anyone with any intellectual honesty that this man had a vision of the law at odds with the nation’s traditions.
Eric Holder was a radical progressive who used the power of the federal government to impose his progressivism on the United States. He loved big interventionist government that took sides based on your politics and your race. He was a menace to the rule of law.
So he exits. But instead of being shamed into obscurity as he ought to be, he will cash in. He’ll abandon the tools of dividing Americans between black and white and worry about a new color: gold. When Holder lands at a big and shameless lawfirm in Washington, D.C., it will say as much about the country in 2014 as Holder’s rancid tenure said about the modern Democratic Party.
Holder’s tenure represents the beginnings of a post-Constitutional era, where the chief law enforcement officer of the United States serves to dismantle legal traditions. Holder is the first attorney general to whom law seemed to be an option, a suggestion on the way to a progressive future. Most folks, and most lawyers, who didn’t devote daily attention to him might not have noticed the ground shifting during his tenure. But shift it did, and very deliberately.
Law, like liberty, is a tenuous thing. Failing to understand the sources of domestic tranquility, the sources of your relatively good life, usually also means failing to recognize the threats to that pleasant tranquility. Holder used his time at Justice to do things that corrode the rule of law. Law and liberty are precious things, and Holder did enormous damage to both.
Time and again, Eric Holder administered justice as the political activist he describes himself as instead of an unbiased law enforcement official,” House Oversight and Government Reform Committee chairman Darrell Issa (R., Calif.) said after recalling that 17 House Democrats voted with Republicans to cite Holder for contempt of Congress.The American people seem to agree:
“Through strong arming reporters, practically ignoring high level wrongdoing, blocking his own agency Inspector General’s access to information, and overseeing a Department that attempted to stonewall Congressional oversight with denials of what is now established fact, Attorney General Holder abused his office and failed to uphold the values of our Constitution,” Issa continued.
House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R., Va.) made the same point in his statement on Holder’s decision to resign.
“Mr. Holder has consistently played partisan politics with many of the important issues facing the Justice Department,” Goodlatte said. “I hope that the next Attorney General will take seriously his role as the nation’s top law enforcement officer, working with Congress to ensure that the laws of our land are followed instead of being a roadblock on the path to justice.”
Even we were shocked when we researched our new book, “Obama’s Enforcer: Eric Holder’s Justice Department,” at the extent to which Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. has politicized the Justice Department and put the interests of left-wing ideology and his political party ahead of the fair and impartial administration of justice. However, there is no doubt that the American public has also recognized just how politically corrupt Mr. Holder is, given this month’s very embarrassing poll conducted by Hart Research for NBC News and The Wall Street Journal.But, hey! We don't want to be accused of being "uncivil." So, in order to end this post on a note of "civility," I will close with the same words with which I titled this post, with nicest thing I can say to Eric Holder, using the words of Curly Bill Brocius (Powers Boothe) in the movie Tombstone:
The poll asked respondents their opinions about 10 different national political officials, ranging from Bill Clinton to President Obama to Eric Holder, as well as the Democratic and Republican parties. They were given choices of very positive, somewhat positive, neutral, somewhat negative, very negative and “don’t know the name.” About a third of respondents didn’t know who Mr. Holder is (37 percent). However, those Americans who knew Mr. Holder gave him the second-lowest “positive” rating of anyone or any organization on the survey at a mere 15 percent. Only Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio had a lower “positive” rating than Mr. Holder. The attorney general’s “positive” rating was less than half of the positive rating of the Republican Party and 27 points behind that of his boss, Mr. Obama, who was rated favorably by only 42 percent of respondents.
As former Justice Department prosecutor Andy McCarthy has said, the Justice Department under Mr. Holder has become “a sort of full-employment program for progressive activists, race-obsessed bean counters and lawyers who volunteered their services during the Bush years to help al Qaeda operatives file lawsuits against the United States.”