Politics

Issa says Holder should apologize to Mexico: ‘Justice has blood on their hands’

Terry was murdered more on Dec. 15, 2010 — more than a year ago — and Congress has been investigating Fast and Furious for most of that time. When TheDC asked, Issa didn’t offer a specific time-frame for the investigation’s conclusion. He did say, however, that the DOJ should begin to cooperate with Congress.

“This scandal can end as quickly as the Justice Department cooperates. We need to get the full facts,” Issa said. “We need to stop having people be, systematically, one after another, scapegoats, and simply say: ‘Hold people accountable.’ As you know, Lanny Breuer and others high in the administration have never answered the question of, ‘since they knew, why are they not being held accountable?'”

Issa added that Holder’s statements about what he knew of Fast and Furious, and when, have been inconsistent.

“Eric Holder said he didn’t know,” Issa said. “Then, he said he didn’t know quite as far back, but he’s never said where the accountability is in his office and his surrounding office. The people who prepared those memos that he didn’t read — are they accountable? Or, is it just acceptable to have the truth told to the attorney general and if he doesn’t read it, it won’t count?”

A total of 103 members of the House have either called for Holder’s resignation or firing, or expressed “no confidence” in Holder via a formal House Resolution, or both. The most recent members on that list, Reps. Kevin Yoder of Kansas and Randy Forbes of Virginia, signed on to Arizona Republican Rep. Paul Gosar’s resolution of “no confidence” in Holder this week. Yoder also thinks it’s time for Holder to resign.

“I feel it is appropriate to call on Attorney General Holder to resign immediately due to his lack of judgment in his involvement in Operation Fast and Furious,” Yoder told TheDC. “I wanted to watch the hearings before jumping to conclusions in haste. Sadly, an American lost his life in this tragedy. Attorney General Holder needs to resign.”*

Two sitting governors, two U.S. senators and all the major Republican presidential candidates join those 103 congressmen.

Issa hasn’t called for Holder’s resignation, but he has hinted that he thinks Obama should remove him. During TheDC’s interview with him Wednesday, Issa reiterated that he thinks Obama should decide whether he trusts Holder to continue as the attorney general in the scandal’s wake.

“What I’ve said publicly is if it were my decision, I don’t have sufficient confidence in his ability to lead that organization,” Issa said. “So, that’s a decision for the president. I think the president should make that decision.”

Holder is scheduled to appear before Issa’s House oversight committee on Feb. 2. Though Holder has already testified before Congress three times about matters relating to Fast and Furious — twice before the House Judiciary Committee and once before the Senate Judiciary Committee — this is the first time Issa’s committee will have an opportunity to question Holder himself.

“The Judiciary Committee has multiple issues with the Attorney General,” Issa said. “We have one issue: the issue of breaking the law in order to enforce the law.”

“The oversight committee is investigating the Department of Justice, which is very different than his appearances before the Judiciary Committees in which they’re asking how things are going at Justice. What we’ve discovered in our investigations is a pattern of cover-up [and] delay. Ultimately Congress was given false information and now we’ve had people both resign and take the Fifth as we try to get to the basic elements of why and how was Congress lied to.”