But Quayle insisted that Media Matters is ”overtly partisan and political. I think it [Congress] definitely should investigate it and I hope the folks at [the House] oversight [committee] start to look into it. Because when you’re having a tax-exempt organization being able to be just a partisan hack for the administration, I think that’s not what their status is supposed to be used for.”
He added that “there should be an investigation” of Schmaler’s conduct “to see if any laws have been violated via the intimidation of whistleblowers and news entities.”
The Obama administration, he continued, is “not acting in their government capacity, they’re acting in a political capacity at all times.”
“Take, for instance, how Kathleen Sebelius violated the Hatch Act and how she hasn’t been held accountable for that. Again, in this instance, you have a DOJ official using taxpayer resources to try to smear whistleblowers. And this is definitely, from a political point of view, to try to protect the administration from any negative publicity that might occur from these allegations.”
“There needs to be a bright line between official capacity and political capacity,” Quayle said. “That is always, it seems with this administration, completely blurred and totally combined into one thing.”
Arizona Republican Rep. Paul Gosar said the coordination between Media Matters and DOJ is “egregious.” Pointing to a DOJ inspector general report on Operation Fast and Furious released Wednesday, Gosar said Schmaler’s email trail “shows, once again, along with this report, that higher-ups in Justice were trying to diffuse the message that was coming out properly by The Daily Caller, by Fox News, by key Republicans, by the Oversight Committee, and others.”
Gosar also wants an investigation into coordination by Media Matters and the DOJ.
“I think not only should we bring in Media Matters, but also ask them in their collusion attempts with the DOJ what they actually did beyond what you have received in your FOIA requests,” he told TheDC in a phone interview.
Schmaler hasn’t answered questions about whether the 69 pages of emails TheDC obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request represent all the communications between the DOJ and the left-wing advocacy group.
The administration took nine months to respond to that public records request, even though executive branch agencies are required to provide answers in most cases within 20 business days.
“When we’re looking at this administration, it was supposed to the most transparent in history,” Gosar said. “If habit is any suggestion with these guys, there’s bunches and bunches more they’re holding onto. And when you look at what we’ve been able to get at the [House] oversight committee compared to what the inspector general got, we’ve just touched the tip of the iceberg.”
“We need to fire the president and his administration and we need to fire Attorney General Eric Holder,” Gosar said, adding that Schmaler is likely “taking orders from those top people.”
These calls for Media Matters investigations come on the heels of Texas Republican Rep. Blake Farenthold’s similar demand Tuesday. (RELATED: GOP Rep. says Congress will likely investigate DOJ-Media Matters collusion, target group’s tax-exempt status)
“This problem stems from poor management at the top that is more concerned with politics than sound policy and fair application of justice,” Farenthold said in an email to TheDC on Wednesday.