Report: DOJ Leaked Docs to Smear Fast & Furious Whistleblower, Says IG
The Department of Justice (DOJ) Inspector General published a new report Monday that confirms former U.S. Attorney for Arizona Dennis Burke leaked a document intended to smear Operation Fast and Furious scandal whistleblower John Dodson.
The DOJ IG said it found “Burke’s conduct in disclosing the Dodson memorandum to be inappropriate for a Department employee and wholly unbefitting a U.S. Attorney.”
“We are referring to OPR our finding that Burke violated Department policy in disclosing the Dodson memorandum to a member of the media for a determination of whether Burke’s conduct violated the Rules of Professional Conduct for the state bars in which Burke is a member,” the IG wrote.
Burke resigned from his post as U.S. Attorney over the incident in August 2011, the first major Department of Justice official to leave his or her post in the Fast and Furious scandal. He said after the fact, in interviews with congressional investigators, that he now views leaking the document as a “mistake.”
In addition to Burke’s involvement in leaking the document, emails the IG uncovered show senior officials at the Department of Justice discussed smearing Dodson.
One of those was Tracy Schmaler, the Director of the Department’s Office of Public Affairs, who resigned her position at the DOJ after emails uncovered through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request showed that she worked with leftwing advocacy group Media Matters for America to smear whistleblowers and members of Congress and the media who sought to investigate DOJ scandals under Attorney General Eric Holder.