Critics Are Claiming This Could Be the Real Reason Behind Attorney General Eric Holder’s Resignation

Critics are drawing a connection between a federal judge’s recent decision to deny the Justice Department’s request to delay the release of a list of Fast and Furious documents and Attorney General Eric Holder’s impending resignation.

U.S. District Court Judge John D. Bates ruled against the DOJ Thursday, denying a request to delay the release of a list of Fast and Furious documents known as a “Vaughn index.” The information has been withheld from Congress and the public under President Barack Obama’s assertion of executive privilege.

Later on Thursday, it was reported that Holder intends to step down as attorney general after his successor is selected.

Townhall’s Katie Pavlich, who wrote a book about the Fast and Furious gun-walking scandal, sarcastically called the two announcements a “coincidence” on Thursday.

The conservative blog Weasel Zippers also made the connection and asked in a headline: “The Reason for Eric Holder’s Resignation?”

Weasel Zippers
Weasel Zippers

U.S. District Court Judge John D. Bates ultimately ruled that the “government’s argument for even more time is unconvincing” and gave the Obama administration 21 more days to produce the Vaughn index to Judicial Watch.

Many users on Twitter seemed convinced the judge’s Fast and Furious ruling could be behind the resignation:

Judicial Watch has more details on the fight to obtain the Fast and Furious Vaughn index:

On July 18, [U.S. District Court Judge John D. Bates] ordered the Department of Justice to produce the documents list by October 1. The ruling by U.S. District Court Judge John D. Bates denied a motion by the Obama DOJ that it be given until over an extra month, until November 3, to produce the Vaughn index. Judge Bates noted that the Justice Department’s request showed the Justice Department was, “at best, it means the Department has been slow to react to this Court’s previous [July 18, 2014] Order. At worst, it means the Department has ignored that Order until now.”

In its FOIA lawsuit, Judicial Watch sought all of the documents the Obama White House was withholding from the House of Representatives under its June 20, 2012, executive privilege claims. The House had been separately litigating to obtain the documents but had gotten nowhere until after Judge Bates ruled that the DOJ finally had to disclose the document information to Judicial Watch. On September 9, U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson, citing Judicial Watch’s success, ordered the DOJ to begin producing information to Congress by November 3.

In denying the DOJ’s motion for an extension until the day before the November elections, Bates ruled, “The government’s argument for even more time is unconvincing,” and granted the government just 21 additional days to produce the Vaughn index to Judicial Watch.

Whether there is anything damning enough in the Fast and Furious Vaughn index to force a sitting U.S. attorney general to resign remains to be seen.

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