House Speaker John Boehner, Ohio Republican, urged President Barack Obama on Wednesday to tell Attorney General Eric Holder to cooperate with the congressional investigation relating to the now defunct Fast and Furious gun walking operation.
An aide from Mr. Boehner’s office released the following:
The Speaker participated in a friendly lunch meeting today with the President and other congressional leaders. The President began the meeting by laying out some of his policy goals, including his “to-do list” for Congress. The bulk of the meeting was spent discussing other issues, including the next debt limit increase and the looming expiration of current tax rates. In a discussion of the debt limit, the Speaker – who has warned that the growing debt is hurting U.S. job creation – asked the President if he is proposing that Congress pass an increase that does not include any spending cuts to help reduce the deficit. The President said, “yes.” The Speaker told the President, “as long as I’m around here, I’m not going to allow a debt ceiling increase without doing something serious about the debt.” The Speaker also asked the President for his plans to deal with the largest tax increase in American history, which will mean tax hikes on small businesses, and the devastating cuts poised to hit our military, both scheduled to take effect at the end of the year. The Speaker pressed the President to approve the job-creating Keystone pipeline energy project. The Speaker also asked the President to encourage the Attorney General to provide the information Congressional investigators have sought about the Fast and Furious operation. The Speaker was very pleased with the sandwiches served.
Congressman Darrell Issa, California Republican and Chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, released a 44 page draft (H/T Politico) contempt charge against Attorney General Eric Holder two weeks ago.
According to various outlets, Mr. Issa is in the midst of lobbying fellow Congressmen to support the contempt resolution. Roll Call reports:
Faced with an initially lukewarm reception from top GOP leaders, House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) is looking to build support for a draft contempt of Congress resolution for Attorney General Eric Holder regarding Issa’s investigation of the “Fast and Furious” gun-smuggling operation.Issa has dispatched his lieutenants on the Oversight panel to lobby fellow Republicans on the issue and is working to garner support from a group of about 30 Democrats as well.The California Republican is pushing the resolution because of what he says is a refusal by Holder to produce documents about Fast and Furious.
Th Obama administration, however, according to Matt Boyle at The Daily Caller, is “shrugging off” the contempt threats towards Mr. Holder:
The U.S. Department of Justice struck back on Tuesday against House oversight committee chairman Rep. Darrell Issa’s push to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress for his failure to comply with a congressional subpoena related to Operation Fast and Furious.
“We believe that a contempt proceeding would be unwarranted given the information the Department has disclosed to the Committee to date; unprecedented given the law enforcement sensitivities at issue; and ill-advised given the damage it would cause to relations between the Executive and Legislative Branches,” Deputy Attorney General James Cole wrote to Issa on behalf of the DOJ.