In a new book titled “Kill or Capture: The War on Terror and the Soul of the Obama Presidency,” author Daniel Klaidman asserts that David Axelrod, Barack Obama’s top campaign adviser, and Attorney General Eric Holder got into a shoving match after Holder accused Axelrod of interfering in the affairs of the Justice Department.
According to Klaidman, Axelrod told Holder, “Don’t ever, ever accuse me of trying to interfere with the operations of the Justice Department.” Holder, chest-to-chest with Axelrod, angrily responded, “That’s bull****.” Valerie Jarrett, Obama’s Svengali, separated them; she “pushed her way between the two men, her sense of decorum disturbed, ordering them to ‘take it out of the hallway’.”
The men were supposedly fighting over attempts by Axelrod to push a political official onto Holder’s staff. Axelrod reportedly told Holder that he “wasn’t Karl Rove,” a reference to Rove’s alleged orchestration of the firing of seven federal prosecutors in 2006.
If there was no politicization of the DOJ going on, then why the argument? The question left unasked is which party–Holder or Axelrod–was trying to politicize the department more. Despite his protestations to the contrary, Holder has politicized the DOJ by hiring only far-left attorneys.
In another example of Holder’s malfeasance, the DOJ launched an investigation into sexual assault and harassment reports at the University of Montana, which has no higher rate of such behavior than many other campuses, because Obama is championing his “war on women” theme.
And of course, there is the famous non-prosecution of the Philadelphia New Black Panther Party voter intimidation.
Axelrod is used to politicizing, too. He defended Obama’s politicization of the killing of Bin Laden this way: “One of the first things he did when he got here into the presidency was order the CIA to make this a top priority. That’s one of the reasons — that’s the main reason why we were able to be in a position to find bin Laden. And then he ordered a mission that was — was, frankly, risky, dangerous. Bob Gates said it was one of the most courageous, one of the gutsiest decisions he saw — he’s ever seen a president make.”
Leaving aside the ludicrous idea that the CIA had not made finding Bin Laden a top priority before The One came into office, Obama’s trumpeting of his own limited role was a sure indication that Axelrod is not above politicizing anything when it comes to Obama’s reelection. The DOJ has reason to feel threatened.
But in a catfight between Axelrod and Holder, the only question is which one has the longer claws.