The resignations haven’t exactly come fast and furious, but Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Acting Director Kenneth Melson is out in the wake of the agency’s Operation Fast and Furious scandal.
An offshoot (no pun intended) of Project Gunrunner, the operation was ostensibly intended to break major gun trafficking rings by letting straw buyers walk with their purchases from American gun shows. In theory, the authorities would then be able to follow the weapons back to the big traffickers rather than going after the small fries.
Second Amendment advocates never liked the idea, fearing it was another gun-grabbing scheme. But when many weapons ended up going to Mexico only to turn up again when used in crimes — such as the killing of a border patrol agent — the operation was canceled. It has since become a topic of congressional scrutiny.