The Arizona Republic questions the reprimand of former Arizona U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke by the Arizona bar association for leaking documents on the “Fast & Furious” gun-running scandal. In response to news accounts and official congressional reports that Burke felt inaccurately characterized events, he surreptitiously released documents to reporters that might help clear the air about the 2010 murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.
“Standing up for our office was not a main priority for the (Justice Department),” Burke told the Republic. “Releasing the documents led to greater transparency than was otherwise going to be provided.” He added: “The entire episode could have had a better level of transparency. And communication. There was not an effort (by Justice officials) to communicate.” The newspaper concludes in an editorial: “Nothing Burke did was designed to cover his tracks, or to lure investigators down a wrong path. He was caught — and punished — in the act of correcting the record, something we have seen precious little of since Terry’s murder.”