The Justice Department has hit back at House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrel Issa, California Republican, over his move to schedule a vote in his committee next week on whether or not to charge Attorney General Eric Holder with contempt of Congress for the AG’s failing to provide thousands of “Fast and Furious” gun walking documents that was demanded of him.
Fox News Channel’s Megyn Kelly reported a statement on Monday from DOJ spokeswoman Tracey Schmaler which read in part:
“Chairman Issa’s latest maneuver is unfortunate and unwarranted. From the beginning, Chairman Issa has distorted the facts, ignored testimony and flung inaccurate accusations at the Attorney General and others. And this latest move fits within that tired political playbook.”
House Speaker John Boehner, Ohio Republican, issued a statement earlier on Monday saying that DOJ has run “out of excuses” on the Fast and Furious debacle.
UPDATE 1: Below is the full DOJ statement media outlets are reporting:
Chairman Issa’s latest maneuver is unfortunate and unwarranted, particularly given the ongoing discussions we’ve been having with Committee staff regarding a mutually acceptable resolution to their requests for information. The Committee has received information from the Department regarding how this flawed operation - and those from previous administrations – were initiated and who authorized them.
“From the beginning, Chairman Issa has distorted the facts, ignored testimony and flung inaccurate accusations at the Attorney General and others, and this latest move fits within that tired political playbook that has so many Americans disillusioned with Washington. The Committee has ignored the fundamental – and undeniable - facts that this Attorney General put a stop to the misguided tactics, called for an investigation of this flawed operation and instituted reforms to prevent this from happening again.
“As recently as a few days ago, the Department staff and Committee staff were discussing a way toward a resolution of this matter. The Attorney General and the Department of Justice will remain focused on the critical job of protecting this Nation and the American people while Chairman Issa continues to play these political games at the expense of all Americans.”
Issa told Buzzfeed that 31 Democrats will vote for contempt against AG Holder, but the DOJ’s response looks more like the Department is gearing up for a 1990’s anti-Ken Starr campaign.