Holder-Issa Showdown: White House Is Loving It

Team Obama likes having people they can ridicule lead charges against them
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 16, 2013 11:21 AM CDT
Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., questions Attorney General Eric Holder on Capitol Hill Wednesday.   (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
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(Newser) – Things got heated on Capitol Hill yesterday as congressman Darrell Issa grilled Eric Holder over the recent White House troubles. At one point, Issa cut off one of the attorney general's answers to laugh about it, and Holder wasn't having it. “No, no, that’s what you typically do,” he said. “No, I’m not going to stop talking now." As Issa tried to get the chairman to quiet the attorney general, Holder interjected, “That is inappropriate and is too consistent with the way in which you conduct yourself as a member of Congress. It’s unacceptable, and it’s shameful.” The exchange actually plays into White House strategy on dealing with the recent scandals, writes David Weigel at Slate. In short, make Republicans look crazy.

"Democrats in the Obama era have always exploited the other side, elevating the people and arguments they can most easily deride," writes Weigel. If Issa wants to take center stage, great. If Sen. Jim Inhofe wants to start throwing around threats of impeachment, as he did last weekend, even better. "In 2013, the White House aims to simultaneously prove that the IRS, Benghazi, and AP stories don’t implicate the president and that the people who think it does are themselves a grave danger." The Issa-Holder show helped. Click for Weigel's full column. (Read more Eric Holder stories.)

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