Issa called out locally, Brings the Gov Walker agenda to DC
Darrell Issa's attempts to escape the consequences of his earmark scandal hasn't been too effective so far. In his hometown North County Times, he's gotten pinged over his personal profits from taxpayer dollars in the letters section, and the San Diego Union-Tribune has put the kibash on Issa's desperate claim that it's not a legitimate story.
Great figures of the 20th Century Republican Party
Media Matters delves into Rep. Jason Chaffetz, Issa protege and one of Glenn Beck's favorites in Congress. With Glenn Beck set to "transition off," having folks like Chaffetz in Congress to keep pushing crazy conspiracy theories will help maintain Beck's de facto subpoena power.
Issa’s muddle of hearings
In an interview with Univision, President Obama said "a serious mistake" may have been made in the Project Gunrunner situation. He noted that the Justice Department Inspector General will be conducting an investigation of the matter and said "we'll hold someone accountable" if a improper behavior is uncovered in that investigation. Darrell Issa continued to press his own investigation independent of the Justice Department, which is at direct odds with his own standard for the Oversight Committee. In 2007, he told C-Span "we're supposed to allow the Administration to do its investigation, and then we do oversight -- we're not investigators." That sentiment hasn't prevented Issa from issuing subpoenas over the incident, it seems that since control of the White House changed and Issa got the gavel, his tune has changed significantly.
McHenry blocks Barney Frank testimony on Dodd-Frank
Oversight business will kick off after the recess tomorrow morning with a hearing on whether Dodd-Frank reforms of the financial sector have effectively ended 'too big to fail.' Stirring up the necessary acrimony and controversy, subcommittee chair Patrick McHenry refused to allow Barney Frank -- namesake of the legislation -- to appear at the hearing. McHenry, incidentally, has received major campaign funding from the banking and insurance industries and been called out for conflicts of interest after investigating banker bonuses after accepting contributions from Countrywide.
Hearings old and new
Calls for investigation into the ATF "Gunrunner" project has been simmering for a while, and Issa announced this week that it is one of his primary investigations:
Darrell Issa’s getting along much better with lobbyists than the President
Following up on Issa's "Worst Week in Washington", the Watchdog Institute follows up with details of the close ties between Issa and lobbyists for the industries he's supposed to be watching. This time, they begin naming names.
Conflicts of interest continue in week’s hearings
CREW is calling for an Congressional Ethics investigation into the circumstances around Issa's dismissal last week of spokesperson Kurt Bardella.
Bardella replaced, Issa back to work
Issa has moved quickly to get past the Bardella firing, bringing on former Daily Caller spox Becca Glover Watkins as his replacement. Interesting to note that Bardella had a particularly cozy relationship with the Daily Caller before his ouster, and it has served as one of the most reliable soft-landing spots for Issa quotes and spin.
Waste, hypocrisy, a reality check, and fail from Issa
One of the earliest concerns about Issa's plans for 'a hearing a day' was that all those document requests would eat up large amounts of staff time. Specifically, that if Issa ended up consistently going fishing, he would create the sorts of efficiency problems he was trying to find. Against that backdrop is recent news that the Department of Homeland Security tasked a 21-person team to handle document requests from Issa.