Nationally, Fast and Furious has entered the vernacular. As a result, Americans of all walks of life now know that the ATF and DOJ oversaw the sale of approximately 2,500 guns to straw purchasers who, in turn, passed them to criminals in Mexico and elsewhere. Moreover, Americans know that the plan from the get-go was to have these guns carried across an international border and passed to criminals whom the ATF then planned to arrest (but they never got around to arresting them because they hadn’t bothered tracing the guns from the point of sale).
Therefore, Americans also know that of the 2,500 guns originally sold, approximately 1,300 are still on the streets and unaccounted for. At least two of these guns were found at Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry’s murder scene in December 2010, and Americans increasingly know that while Terry may have been the first American victim, odds are he won’t be the last with such a large number of weapons on the loose.
Lastly, Americans know that President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder have both denied complicity in Fast and Furious, particularly in the gun-running aspects of it. Throughout the course of denying complicity, Holder has changed his story more than once, Obama has demonstrated confusion over when he first learned about Fast and Furious, and former U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke (Arizona) was allowed to retire without charges although he was demonstrably involved in covering up the connection between Fast and Furious and Agent Terry’s death.
Perhaps through all this, the one thing the American people have witnessed to a sickening degree is the stark failure to prosecute those involved in Fast and Furious to the full extent of the law. Holder has been handled with kid gloves, Burke is now living a private life, and Obama is not being asked to clear up the many discrepancies in his timeline.
Where the same state that brought you S.B. 1070–the immigration law aimed at allowing the state to do the job the feds won’t do–is set to open their own investigation into Fast and Furious and bring state charges against those the feds have heretofore refused to charge. Andy Tobin, Arizona’s Speaker of the House, will announce tomorrow (Monday, January 23rd) the scope of the investigation, and will call for state investigators to have their findings back to him no later than March 30.
The bottom line: Arizona is about to the do the job the feds won’t do – again.