Perry: Fast and Furious is 'Nixonian'
June 24th, 2012
11:40 AM ET
6 years ago

Perry: Fast and Furious is 'Nixonian'

(CNN) – Texas Gov. Rick Perry on Sunday labeled President Barack Obama's claim of executive privilege over Operation Fast and Furious as "Nixonian," suggesting the scandal is worse than Watergate.

"You have a president who is using his executive privilege to keep that information from Congress. If that's not Nixonian, then I don't know what is," Perry said on CBS' "Face the Nation."

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The Republican governor and former presidential candidate portrayed the botched gun-running operation as more serious than the 1970s Watergate scandal that led to the resignation of former President Richard Nixon.

"We've had over 300 Mexican nationals killed directly attributable to this Fast and Furious operation, where they brought those guns into Mexico. A former Marine and a Border Patrol agent by the name of Brian Terry lost his life," Perry said. "With Watergate you had a second-rate burglary."

Obama asserted executive privilege last week over Justice Department documents surrounding the Fast and Furious probe by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. The House is expected to vote next week to cite Attorney General Eric Holder for contempt of Congress.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives launched the operation out of Arizona to track weapon purchases by Mexican drug cartels. However, it lost track of more than 1,000 firearms that the agency had allowed straw buyers to carry across the border, and two of the lost weapons turned up at the scene of the 2010 killing of U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.

- CNN's Tom Cohen contributed to this report.

Filed under: President Obama • Rick Perry
soundoff (309 Responses)
  1. Mike in Texas

    Issa is on record saying Obama intentionally wanted guns to be sold to the drug cartels to kill Americans so he push for an assault weapon ban. He is believing the words of a Right Wing blogger.

    June 24, 2012 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  2. Jay Dee

    The Bush administration initiated the "Fast and Furious" operation in 2006-2007 by the ATF in a operation called "Wide Receiver." November 1, 2011: Lanny Breuer, an assistant attorney general in charge of the criminal division, tells a Senate judiciary subcommittee that he first learned of the tactic of allowing illegally purchased guns to leave shops in April 2010. That tactic, he said, was executed during a 2006-2007 ATF program, called Operation Wide Receiver, which happened during the George W. Bush administration.
    Breuer says he should have warned Holder and other Justice officials about the 2006-2007 tactics, but failed to do so. He said he also failed to recognize that the same tactics used in 2006-2007 were being used again in Fast and Furious.

    June 24, 2012 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  3. Ancient Texan

    If there is nothing to hide and the president wasn't connected to this debacle, then why the stonewalling and cover-up?

    June 24, 2012 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  4. Larry L

    This started with Bush in 2006. If was a bad idea then and continues to be a bad idea. President Obama has used the "Executive Privilege" rule one time. Bush used it six times with no Republican outrage. Republicans have done nothing to produce jobs – in fact they've obstructe4d efforts to clean up the mess they left behind. This is a witch hunt for politics only.- another low-life Republican scam in an election year.

    June 24, 2012 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  5. Tyss

    We need to mind our own business. Gary Johnson 2012

    June 24, 2012 10:23 pm at 10:23 pm |
  6. JD

    Obama, unlike Bush is not hiding WMD, although bush did in his mind. The accusations are absurd, any motivation from the AG or Obama administration would be baseless. Is anybody curious about who had spoken with the victim's family, and their political leaning? This is a circus, politics at it's gleaning moment, election time, get your peanuts!

    June 24, 2012 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  7. Ralph

    If there was nothing to hide why all this talk, why the President complicity in not showing the divines pages.

    June 24, 2012 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  8. Marty, FL

    Hogwash Perry. Nixon was crook. This fast and furious overreach is absurd paranoia driven by of all things a blogger, Vanderboegh.

    The GOP is diverting to this nonsense instead of focusing on jobs.

    June 24, 2012 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  9. John

    If a Republican were in the White House and a Border Patrolman was slain and the president ordered executive priviledge to stop any inquiries the media and left wing blogs would explode and demand an impeachment.

    June 24, 2012 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  10. ColJIm1956

    Funny thing is, for as often as he is wrong, Rick Perry is right. Use of executive privilege by presidents has historically indicated something is amiss.

    June 24, 2012 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  11. FubarObama

    Obama is going down on this. He should have exerted executive privilege on all the national security leaks that make him look like John Wayne. Instead he withholds information because he knows it will force Holdet out before November. Now the are both in deep.

    June 24, 2012 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  12. AnnF

    So...why not release all the documents and put an end to this debate?

    June 24, 2012 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |
  13. Aces Full

    Libs can hate and mock Rick Perry all they like, but he is exactly right about this and they have to swallow that pill because they know it's true.

    June 24, 2012 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  14. craig

    The real reason we shouldn't "mess with Texas" is because it's already a mess. Perry is the "messer in charge" and he's doing a great job.

    June 24, 2012 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  15. Namebilly gilliam

    #1 law man won't follow the same laws he is supposed to uphold,any CITIZEN would be arrested? Hiding something Eric Holder? Protecting someone Mr.Holder. Nothing but the truth will work or you sir are a hypocrite and a crook. Say hello to a transparent W.H.,so many stalls and getting around the truth. THE TRUTH SHALL SET YOU FREE ,unless you are guilty ,Like I tell my grandchildren,tell the truth. Good example for them not to follow ( mr
    Holder. Signed WORRIED

    June 24, 2012 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  16. borisjimbo

    Are you people finally admitting Nixon was wrong on Watergate, that Watergate really was "a cancer on the presidency"? About time; the rest of us knew that forty years ago.

    June 24, 2012 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  17. NovRepublic

    Executive privilege means Obama knows he can be tied to Fast and Furious. That is a fact. Run from the facts if you want, or tell me we have to have the trial over before we release everything (you have to pass the bill to know whats in it).

    June 24, 2012 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm |
  18. labman57

    Desperate conservative pundits and members of Congress attempt to make political mountain out of molehill, rest of nation shrugs and yawns.

    If the House committee chairman is sincerely concerned about the origins, purpose, and decisions associated with the Fast and Furious program, then why did he adamantly refuse to hear testimony from the members of the Bush Administration that initiated these types of ATF programs?
    Answer - because he is less interested in learning the truth and more interested in damaging the Obama Administration and its AG, and any association between F&F and the Bush regime undermines Issa's true objective.

    Executive privilege is a valid, constitutional-protected power granted to the POTUS ... unless it is an election year, the incumbent is a Democrat, and the House committee is chaired by a slimy, self-serving political ass hat on a crusade to damage the opposition party.

    June 24, 2012 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  19. Mike Friedman

    Compared to Bush, Palin and Perry, Dan Quayle belongs on Mt. Rushmore.

    June 24, 2012 11:32 pm at 11:32 pm |
  20. Brehon

    Perry = George W. Bush without the brains.

    Sponsored by the Grand Oil Party – "We're oily, but we're rich!"

    100% Pure Republican Hypocrisy (TM)

    June 24, 2012 11:34 pm at 11:34 pm |
  21. Ralph G.

    Partisan politics. You can say anything and people think that it somehow makes sense. Is there any substance to what he is saying? Of course not. But will Rick be held accountable? Of course not.

    June 24, 2012 11:34 pm at 11:34 pm |
  22. Dave

    Don't forget that before the Watergate breakin a National News Network broke into Republican HQ to steal info, history wiped that little story off the books. We all know with Watergate, it wasn't the crime it was the coverup. With Fast and Furious we have a dead American AND a coverup. The left refused to cover this story only because of Fox News did it make it to the public.

    June 24, 2012 11:35 pm at 11:35 pm |
  23. skwirrl

    Steve Schoner – "What's really important" Um this is pretty much the biggest scandal since the Tuskeegee syphilis experiment. This is like finding evidence that said Bush ordered people to manufacture evidence and that all the other intelligence agencies didn't have the same intel we did.

    June 24, 2012 11:38 pm at 11:38 pm |
  24. What a waste of space

    As someone said earlier this is payback by Issa. The Republicans said the Affordable Health Care Act was too big to read at 2500 pages. Issa has received 7500 pages of documents relating to F&F and wants more. Really?

    June 25, 2012 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  25. Anonymous

    Obama and Holder are traitors to the American public and are responsible for the deaths of American law enforcement officers, because they orchestrated "fast and furious" to blame law abiding Americans for the thousands of guns they gave to Mexican drug cartels. Their ultimate goal was more draconian gun control laws and passing another federal assualt weapons ban. The Democrats ultimate goal is to disarm law abiding American citizens and leave us to the mercy of the criminal. They are all traitors and should be removed from office in November. NOBAMA 2012. NODEMOCRATS 2012.

    June 25, 2012 12:07 am at 12:07 am |
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