Arizona Republican Rep. Ben Quayle on Wednesday evening dropped legislation that would serve as a formal call for President Barack Obama to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate Operation Fast and Furious.
Quayle introduced House Resolution 532 mere hours before Attorney General Eric Holder’s scheduled Thursday morning appearance before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on the scandal.
“I’ve called for Attorney General Holder to resign, I think he should be removed immediately,” Quayle told The Daily Caller in a phone interview Wednesday. “You look at how all of this has been unfolding — it hasn’t been with any help from the DOJ. They continue to obfuscate the facts, to really hamper the investigation that Chairman Issa is trying to perform, and I know you’ve seen it as well as some of the materials they provide are fully redacted pages.”
Quayle said he thinks now is the “time we actually get the facts out on that table,” adding that “the only way to do this is through a special counsel.”
“It had to be done,” Quayle said about why he introduced the resolution.
Technically, President Obama would have to appoint a special prosecutor if there were to be one. On its own, Congress doesn’t have that authority.
The formal House Resolution begins by saying it is “[e]xpressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the President of the United States should appoint a special counsel to investigate Operation Fast and Furious and the Attorney General’s knowledge and management of Operation Fast and Furious.”
The resolution goes on to explain a brief history of Fast and Furious before laying out a timeline of Holder’s inconsistent congressional testimony on the matter. “[O]n May 3, 2011, the Attorney General testified before the House Judiciary Committee and, when asked when he first knew about operation Fast and Furious, he stated, ‘I’m not sure of the exact date, but I probably heard about Fast and Furious for the first time over the last few weeks.’”
As the resolution points out, Holder made that statement before the House Judiciary Committee even though “beginning in July 2010, weekly memos addressed to the Attorney General included briefings about Operation Fast and Furious.”
The formal document then points out how Holder altered his original May 3, 2011 testimony during a Nov. 8, 2011 Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, changing when he first knew of Fast and Furious from a “few weeks” before then to a “couple months.”
“I first learned about the tactics and the phrase Operation Fast and Furious at the beginning of this year, I think, when it became a matter of, I guess, public controversy,” Holder testified in November 2011 before the Senate Judiciary Committee. “In my testimony before the House committee I did say ‘a few weeks’ I probably could have said a couple of months.”