The Free Press, Mankato, MN

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July 24, 2013

Issa's scandal hunting the real scandal

The GOP congressman also has a checkered past

Before he took over as chairman of the House Oversight Committee, Congressman Darrell Issa said he would conduct “seven hearings a week” to investigate the Obama administration because — as he told Rush Limbaugh — Barack Obama “has been one of the most corrupt presidents in modern times.”

Issa knows something about corruption. According to the New Yorker, he was investigated three different times for stealing cars, leading to two indictments for grand theft.

He was also investigated for arson/insurance fraud, prompting David Plouffe to call him “Mister Grand Theft Auto and suspected arsonist/insurance swindler.”

After Issa’s business burned down, the St. Paul insurance company’s investigation found accelerants in four places and concluded that the fire started in at least two places. Perhaps coincidentally, he had quadrupled the insurance coverage less than three weeks before the fire, and had removed everything of value from the building the day before the fire. He was never convicted.

Separately, he was arrested on concealed weapons charges.

Issa’s first investigation of the Obama administration involved the claim that it had floated an administration job to keep a Democratic congressman out of a Senate primary. Issa quietly shut down the investigation after it was revealed that the Bush administration had done the same.

His next try was the failed “Fast and Furious” gunwalking sting into Mexico by the ATF, which Issa declared “went all the way to the White House.”

Issa was partially correct: the program started with George Bush’s White House, where it was called Operation Wide Receiver. In fact, Issa misrepresented emails from that 2006-2007 Tucson case, Wide Receiver, as being from Fast and Furious to attack Eric Holder. The Justice Department Inspector General determined that Holder didn’t know anything about the program until after it was shut down.

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