Minnesota congresswoman and Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann told The Daily Caller late Friday that she thinks Attorney General Eric Holder should resign immediately because of Operation Fast and Furious.
Bachmann is the first presidential candidate, and the 52nd member of Congress, to demand Holder’s immediate resignation. “Attorney General Holder should resign because of the mismanagement of ‘Fast and Furious,’” Bachmann told TheDC. “As the nation’s top law enforcement officer, he bears the responsibility for the actions of his department.”
Bachmann went further with this statement than with her previous position on Holder’s job performance. On October 10 in New Hampshire, she told TheDC: “There needs to be a full investigation. And surely he should resign … if the facts prove to be what they appear to be.”
Holder is on a Caribbean junket this week, on a trip scheduled to take him to Barbados, Trinidad and the Dominican Republic — on what his office has characterized as a law enforcement-related excursion. His spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler, whom former Justice Department civil rights division attorney J. Christian Adams has dubbed Holder’s “spin mistress,” is traveling with him. Schmaler has repeatedly declined to answer any questions about the increasing numbers of federal lawmakers calling for Holder’s immediate resignation.
Bachmann’s statement comes on the heels of Texas Gov. Rick Perry, another Republican presidential hopeful, punting the question. Perry spokesman Mark Miner has similarly dodged TheDC’s questions about whether he thinks the attorney general should step down.
Perry addressed Operation Fast and Furious for the first time on Friday in New York City, but stopped short of saying Holder should resign over the deadly gun-walking program. (THE COMPLETE LIST: Members calling for Holder to resign)
Fast and Furious is likely to become a political hot potato heading into 2012 if President Obama ultimately backs his attorney general and keeps him as the nation’s top law enforcement officer. Several members of Congress calling for Holder’s resignation have indicated they believe Obama is “complicit” in the program’s failings if he doesn’t fire Holder now.
White House spokesman Eric Schultz, the same Obama official who CBS News reporter Sharyl Attkisson said verbally assaulted her on Sept. 30 for covering Fast and Furious, has continued to ignore The Daily Caller’s requests for comment on the surge in calls for Holder’s resignation emanating from Capitol Hill.