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October 04, 2011

CBS Reporter Sharyl Attkisson Says WH Spokesman Screamed and Cursed at Her Over Fast & Furious Investigation [JWF]

House Republicans today called for a special counsel to investigate the massive Fast & Furious scandal following the devastating revelations reported Monday by CBS News reporter Sharyl Attkisson, one of the few in the "mainstream" media actually reporting on this.

Today Attkisson appeared on The Laura Ingraham Show and detailed the reaction of White House and DOJ spokesthings when she questioned them last Friday.


Thanks to Ingraham's producer Matt Wolking for the clip. Here's some relevant transcript.

1:31 - In between the yelling that I received from Justice Department yesterday, the spokeswoman--who would not put anything in writing, I was asking for her explanation so there would be clarity and no confusion later over what had been said, she wouldn't put anything in writing--so we talked on the phone and she said things such as the question Holder answered was different than the one he asked. But he phrased it, he said very explicitly, 'I probably heard about Fast and Furious for the first time over the last few weeks.'

6:05 - Laura: So they were literally screaming at you?
Attkisson: Yes. Well the DOJ woman was just yelling at me. The guy from the White House on Friday night literally screamed at me and cussed at me. [Laura: Who was the person? Who was the person at Justice screaming?] Eric Schultz. Oh, the person screaming was [DOJ spokeswoman] Tracy Schmaler, she was yelling not screaming. And the person who screamed at me was Eric Schultz at the White House."

7:33 - Laura: Do we know the exact number [of guns] that went over to Mexico?
Attkisson: We know more than 2,000 in Fast and Furious and I will soon be reporting on the fact that that is not the only case. 2,000 for that operation according to the agents involved.

8:28 - ...Is it sort of a drip, drip. And I'm certainly not the one to make the case for DOJ and White House about what I'm doing wrong. They will tell you that I'm the only reporter--as they told me--that is not reasonable. They say the Washington Post is reasonable, the LA Times is reasonable, the New York Times is reasonable, I'm the only one who thinks this is a story, and they think I'm unfair and biased by pursuing it.

Oh no, she's being unfair!

The LA Times has been doing a decent job reporting on this and certainly Attkisson has been doing her best to restore to credibility of CBS News, which was seemingly permanently damaged following RatherGate. I wouldn't even waste time following the Washington Post and New York Times. They may be doing some perfunctory reporting on F&F but their credibility is so low I doubt they really want to go after Holder and Obama too strongly.

This scandal has largely avoided the kind of attention normally accorded your typical Washington scandal since it involves a Democrat administration running guns that has left a long trail of dead people. It goes without mention the attention it would get if a Republican occupied the White House.

For a fun exercise, check out how many results a Google search for "Fast and Furious Holder" gets compared with "Occupy Wall Street" (I added "Holder" to the search since results show up for the assorted F&F movies otherwise).

Media bias? What media bias?

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posted by Guest Blogger at 03:01 PM

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