Louisiana Republican Rep. Charles Boustany, who has previously called for Attorney General Eric Holder’s immediate resignation, took to the House floor on Wednesday to double down on his demand.
“Mr. Speaker, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder must resign immediately,” Boustany said on the House floor. “After months of evading tough questions and giving unclear answers about Operation Fast and Furious, it now appears the Justice Department’s top official has contradicted his own testimony given before Congress.”
The contradiction Boustany referred to was made evident through documents released last Friday showing that several senior Department of Justice officials were intimately knowledgeable of, and involved with, crafting a February 4 letter to Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley. That letter contained false statements.
The attorney general and his senior aides and deputies have all claimed ignorance of the operation and its details, though there is mounting evidence to the contrary.
Fast and Furious was a Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives program, overseen by the DOJ, which facilitated the sale of thousands of weapons to Mexican drug cartels via straw purchasers. Straw purchasers are people who can legally purchase guns in the United States but do so with the intention of illegally trafficking them into Mexico.
At least 300 people in Mexico were killed with Fast and Furious weapons, as was U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry.
“Why did the attorney general allow for the transfer of guns across the border without working in conjunction with the Mexican authorities when he knew the ATF was unable to trace them?,” Boustany asked in his floor speech. “That’s a very important question that must be answered.”
Mexico Attorney General Marisela Morales told the LA Times in September that Holder and the Obama administration never briefed her on Fast and Furious while it was going on, and still haven’t told her anything about it. Mexico’s top law enforcement official said she gets her information about Fast and Furious from the press.
“This botched program should never have been authorized in the first place,” Boustany continued. “Attorney General Holder should resign over his failure and his evasive and contradictory testimony to the United States Congress.”