But Democrats familiar with the investigation scoffed at the idea that a member of the White House communications staff is telling the Justice Department how to respond to Issa’s document demands.
Other portions of the subpoena also appear to reach beyond Holder’s involvement in the program.
For instance, the subpoena demands that the Justice Department provide all photographs of the crime scene of the slaying of Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agent Jaime Zapata and “surveillance tapes recorded by pole cameras inside the Lone Wolf Trading Co. store between 12:00 a.m. on October 3, 2010 and 12:00 a.m. on October 7, 2010.” Both the store and Zapata’s slaying have been linked to the Fast and Furious operation.
Oversight and Government Reform ranking member Elijah Cummings assailed Issa’s document demands. “This subpoena is a deep-sea fishing expedition and a gross abuse of the committee’s authority,” the Maryland Democrat said. “It demands tens of thousands of pages of highly sensitive law enforcement and national security materials that have never been requested before and are completely unrelated to Operation Fast and Furious. Rather than legitimate fact-gathering, this looks more like a political stunt.”
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.