The House Government Oversight and Reform Committee voted 23-17 today to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in Contempt of Congress. House Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor will be bringing the Contempt resolution to a vote in the full House of Representatives next week. Holder can avoid the vote if he decides to turn over the documents that the House is demanding but that seems highly unlikely.
Holder went on the offensive with a scathing statement singling out the Chairman of the committee, Darrell Issa, saying,
“Simply put, any claims that the Justice Department has been unresponsive to requests for information are untrue. From the beginning, Chairman Issa and certain members of the Committee have made unsubstantiated allegations first, then scrambled for facts to try to justify them later. That might make for good political theater, but it does little to uncover the truth or address the problems associated with this operation and prior ones dating back to the previous Administration.”
President Obama decided to enter the fray on the document controversy today by exerting Executive Privilege to keep certain documents from the committee. In doing so he has signaled that he has the Attorney General’s back but may have inadvertently gotten involved in a fight he could have distanced himself from.
As reported earlier today in the Inquisitr,Michael Steel, a spokesman for Speaker Boehner said,
“Until now, everyone believed that the decisions regarding ‘Fast and Furious’ were confined to the Department of Justice. The White House decision to invoke executive privilege implies that White House officials were either involved in the ‘Fast and Furious’ operation or the cover-up that followed. The Administration has always insisted that wasn’t the case. Were they lying, or are they now bending the law to hide the truth?”