Open Letter to Sen. Grassley on David Chipman’s ATF Director Nomination

I’m not asking you to do anything more than this, for now, Senator. Please pick up the phone and direct a staffer to look into allegations raised on the same source site from which the world first heard of ATF’s Operation Fast and Furious “gunwalking.” (Senator Chuck Grassley/Facebook)

U.S.A. – -( Dear Senator Grassley,

As the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, you play a key role in making sure the interests of your constituents are represented on all nominations brought before the committee and that its obligation for advice and consent is executed with fidelity to the Constitution being the foremost consideration. I am writing to ask you to lead in investigating serious allegations apparently involving ATF Director nominee David Chipman posted at a source you are familiar with that needs to be aired and either dismissed or validated and pursued before voting on his confirmation.

You have no doubt received plenty of objections from gun owners and their advocacy groups that have provided you with numerous examples of why a career “gun control” advocate cannot provide impartial leadership. I have made the case of the nominee’s bias and outright deception in numerous articles and blog posts over the years. While I encourage you to familiarize yourself with all such observations and documentation, the reason I am writing you today is to call your attention to a matter that I’m not aware anyone else is talking about. It could be key to determining not just the candidate’s administrative qualifications, but his character and trustworthiness with authority and power.

I trust you remember the website CleanUp ATF. It is a site established and frequented by former and current ATF agents who became fed up with agency waste, corruption abuse, and fraud that they claim to have witnessed firsthand in the course of their duties and dealings with management. I personally have been trying to get Congress to pay heed to their allegations since 2009 when I asked the House Oversight Committee to investigate ATF corruption charges being made by whistleblowers and insiders. Being controlled at that time by the Democrats, my plea was ignored.

Had the representatives done their duty and provided oversight, the professional and personal risks of being exposed may have caused some in ATF management to think twice about implementing the murderous Operation Fast and Furious “gunwalking” scheme. As you know, Senator, the first indications that guns were being “walked” across the Mexican border with the sanction of ATF officials began with chatter on a CleanUp ATF post:

“1desertrat” Posted this on 22 December 2010

“Word is that curious George Gillett the Phoenix ASAC stepped on it again. Allegedly he has approved more than 500 AR-15 type rifles from Tucson and Phoenix cases to be “walked” to Mexico. Appears that ATF may be one of the largest suppliers of assault rifles to the Mexican cartels! One of these rifles is rumored to have been linked to the recent killing of a Border Patrol Officer in Nogales, AZ. Can anyone confirm this information?”

It wasn’t until after I’d written another open letter, to the staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee that you chaired, and began communicating with them and with the House Oversight Committee then chaired by Rep. Darrell Issa, that whistleblower protections were extended to ATF insiders ready to give sworn testimony but fearful of retaliation.

I bring this history up not because it directly relates to the Chipman nomination, but to remind you of CleanUp ATF’s track record. When it came to Fast and Furious, the story could have remained buried had it not been for a true thread that, when pulled, unraveled the fabric.

That’s why you need to know what has been said about “Chipman” on CleanUp ATF, to see if once more the allegations prove out, and to ensure answers to questions are given under oath:

“When it was brought to the Bureau’s attention that Chipman had tried to grease the skids for former ASAC Stankoweicz(sp), the 5th floor was outraged and tanked the contract offer for someone who had so blatantly and publicly disgraced the Bureau. That did not prevent him from sliding into some other non-Bureau contracted position. The problem is, that Chipman has been manipulating the Bureau-sponsored contractor to pad the BQL with friends. The net effect is that the truly qualified people are not being considered for the positions. It has also been stated that Chipman has delivered HIS version of the BQLs for these contract positions, demanding his buddies be placed at the top of the list. Yep, fraud. That simple. Yep, the 5th floor knows.”

“Fraud” is a strong word. And just to clarify, that’s where the Director’s Suite 500 is located. I don’t pretend to fully understand the details, and I’m assuming “BQL” as used here refers to a “Best Qualified List.”

A word of clarification is in order here – I leave it to your staffers to determine that the “Chipman” referred to in the CUATF thread is the same person as the ATF Director nominee. Not having access to complete Bureau staffing, I am limited to circumstantial conclusions, noting his assignment during that time period (2009 – 2010 Office of Management, Financial Management – Washington, DC Field Assets and Resource Management Branch, ATF Special Agent in Charge – GS-1811-15), and seeing the Office of Management is highly-placed on the Eric Holder-approved organization chart.

A “Professionalism in ATF” thread at CUATF offers further insight into who “Chipman” is alleged to have “tried to grease the skids for”:

“Stankiewicz literally got caught trying to pull down his pants on Intel GS [name redacted here] during the Coatesville Serial Arson case [the same case which made national headlines].”

Especially in light of recent #MeToo developments where it is insisted that such past actions have present relevance.

It would be not just appropriate, but the Senate Judiciary Committee’s duty, to determine the truth of all the allegations posted on CUATF.

While you’re at it, you might also direct investigating staffers to determine if the now-infamous photo of an armed agent proudly posing in the rubble and ashes of Mt. Carmel is indeed a younger Chipman, as would appear to be the case. If so, you might ask him if such “hunting trophy” photos, celebrating the fiery deaths of men, women, and innocent children, are appropriate for someone who has taken an oath to a Constitution established “to secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.”

Per The New York Times, “the Senate hearing is expected to take place in late May,” which further notes that Sen. Joe Manchin “a critical vote, has said he is favorable to Mr. Chipman.” There is not much time.

Then again, to put it bluntly, I’m not asking you to do anything more than your job, which at this point consists of asking a staffer to look into things – just like last time, with Fast and Furious.


David Codrea

About David Codrea:

David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating/defending the RKBA and a long-time gun owner rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament. He blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” is a regularly featured contributor to Firearms News, and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.

David Codrea

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Respectful letter sent. Thank you David for all your time and efforts! Praying for you and your family.


I have absolutely zero confidence Grassley or any other RINO will do anything but lip service to stop Chipmans assured nomination to run Bidens Firearm KGB.

We are living under communist rule that would not exist without the help and complicity of the Republican Party. I also have zero confidence that Trumps picks for Supreme Court Justices will do anything to advance the Second Amendment to its rightful place as a National Right and not as a shameful relic of post colonial times. They will maintain equilibrium at best.


This is one of the most lucid and accurate comments I’ve seen on here. Many people fail to realize that VERY little legislation passes and VERY few confirmations happen purely along party lines. There’s a lot of political theater going on for the benefit of the constituents and for the sake of election cycles but most of these politicians are friends who work together to grow government’s size and power and further restrict our rights. I tell people all the time to answer two questions. When was the last time a law was passed that expanded your rights? When was… Read more »


You are so correct.

All these slick, slippery, slimy, self serving politician do is find ways to INCREASE the size, cost, reach and power of government.

They all must go.


Agree, with but one qualification – “rights” do not come from “government”; thus, “… a law that was passed that expanded your rights …” can never be. I expect that your point is ” … a law to protect or eliminate restrictions on individual ‘rights’ and ‘freedoms’ …” Please accept this comment as a constructive point.


I agree wholeheartedly. The swamp is never held accountable and the swamp never changes. The republicans have no backbone to stand up for what’s right and no stomach to fight.


As far as Chipman’s nomination, FLAT-ASS NO!
Why is it when anti gun people get involved in government agencies,
people end up dead?

Last edited 1 year ago by Cruiser

Great work, David. This kind of work is what it takes to identify and root out the rot in our federal bureaucracy. Identify the rats and roaches, shine the bright light of public scrutiny on them and out them to the world. Great work. Now, let us see if our Senate still functions as it should or have they rolled over to the fraudulent Harris/Biden regime.


Grassley was one of the senators on the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee Hearings on Ruby Ridge. He did a fairly good job and was one of the senators who suggested that consideration should be given to eliminating the BATFE. He also expressed grave concerns about the militarization of federal law enforcement.

Not sure what happened over time, but he was worthless on 2/28/18:


Once again, you’re spot on.

This is off topic but I noticed no matter the content of your comments you always seem to have that one down vote. It would appear you have a fan! I’ll go ahead and offset that vote.


Badge of honor. He downvoted me when I praised the virtues of motherhood and apple pie, stated that the sky was blue, and I’m sure if I sang the praises of truth, justice, and the American way, he would punch that button. The way he engages is hysterical. BTW, if you haven’t watched the Senate hearings on Ruby Ridge and Waco, I encourage you to do so. It takes a lot of time, but it is very interesting. The dynamic of both the senators and the witnesses was completely different between Ruby Ridge and Waco. All the recordings are on… Read more »


I’ve seen some but not all. It infuriates me so I have to take a break. I’m currently reading the book about the Weavers and Ruby Ridge called Every Knee Shall Bow by Jess Walter. It’s good. Btw, if you haven’t read Unintended Consequences you definitely should.


I read UC a long time ago. The premise was interesting, but the story took some weird twists. An updated version that explored the many sides to the issue and their agendas/motivations without the weirdness and overly detailed, technical wandering would be better than the original IMO. I never read Walter’s book, I’ll check it out. The senate hearings show just what length people will go to in order to absolve themselves of responsibility, ignore facts, pretend disagreements didn’t exist, sync-up their stories, and think their uneducated opinions about technical matters are going to hold-up in the face of technical… Read more »


Big picture: the federal government has no authority or even right to involve itself in matters of gun control in the private sector per the 2nd and 10th amendments. These are state and local issues. Government is big and expensive because 80% of what it does is extraconstitutional. A simple lawsuit prohibiting the federal government from engaging in matters outside its constitutional jurisdictions should end the matter in the Supreme Court.

Roland T. Gunner

Lets just go ahead and abolish ATF. Remaining empliyees can finish out ther 20 years with, I dont know, US Postal Police, maybe.


Just drop the “F” and make it the ATE.
Let them enforce drunk driving laws, tobacco taxes, and fireworks violations.


Certainl NOT.FedGov hve ZERO authority over A, T, F, or E. WHY perpetuate such tyranny for one more second?

Their “authority” grabs were very early on. Look into the “Whiskey Rebellion” in the first few decades of our existence as a nation. It started there. Not with the rebellion, but the unlawfultaxes that provoked it, and brutal “enforcement” practices. Such corruption hs continued and grown since then. Lay the axe to the root of all such gummit overreach.


Maybe they could get work on the Keystone pipeline, no wait. They can get jobs in green energy.


The death knoll of this nation will be at the hands of We the People when our apathy pushes us into a corner like the sheep most are and finally either become slaves to the unfounded totalitarian bureaucracy or act to redress our grievances to physically remove and replace our government with that that was established by the founding documents. Semper Fidelis.

Last edited 1 year ago by USMC0351Grunt
Roland T. Gunner

The only apathy I see, is no one wants to start the actual shooting war yet.


They are easy to start but very very difficult to stop! Further, it’s not just the bad guys or the good guys that end up getting killed, there is a crap load of Innocents killed right smack-dab in the middle: please take a look at Sarajevo and other cities in the disintegrating Yugoslavia during their many civil wars.

Cheers from the oil patch in Central Wyoming

Last edited 1 year ago by Neanderthal75

Not to mention economic and political fallout. Was US to descend into chaos and violence, dollar would lose its status as defacto world currency and both China and Russia would take advantage of the power vacuum.

Roland T. Gunner

I am fairly well read on the Yugoslavian wars. I followed the exploits of Zeljko Raznatovic for many years. I suggest we deal with our homegrown Marxists the way they dealt with them in Kenya and Rhodesia. And by the way, Colonel Michael Hoare died last year, at 100 years old.


Somewhere in hell Robert Mugabe is finally getting his Just Desserts!

Cheers from the oil patch in Central Wyoming


I remain on the Texas border at FOB Harmony until the ATF and the federal government properly acknowledge, AND PURSUE RESPONSIBILITY AND ACCOUNTABILITY TO THOSE DIRECTLY RESPONSIBLE FOR the murder of fellow US Marine and US Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.


Dear Senator Grassley,
Don’t let your minority members waste time lecturing at Chipman because he doesn’t care and voters won’t hear your words. Do nothing (beyond your opening remarks) other than ask tough, penetrating questions and stop him when he does not give a direct answer. Make him explain why his priority is to restrict the liberties of honest citizens over that of prosecuting criminals. I expect to hear more than one “reclaiming my time.” And if toady (beg pardon, I mean Chairman Nadler) interrupts, insist that the clock stop and be wound back.


Dear Chipman, with a smile & a wink we are closer than you think.


Aw, let them get jobs making solar panels.


Good luck with this. Doesn’t appear to be any admirable, decent, representatives left in congress, and Joe Manchin least of all.


Chipman was responsible in all the evil things ATF did in the 90’s and during the Obama admin. Please do everything in your power to stop his nomination