Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN News

Holder Testifies on “Fast and Furious,” Calls for more gun control

Friday, February 3, 2012

On Thursday, February 2, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder testified before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee regarding his role in the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives' gun running operation known as “Fast and Furious.”

During the hearing, Holder continued to deny any foreknowledge of the botched operation.  Representative Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of the House committee, led the charge in questioning Holder on his involvement and knowledge.  When Issa asked Holder if he had been briefed on the wiretaps presented in this case, Holder responded, "These wiretaps are very voluminous, read well kinds of things.  I have not read them." 

The U.S. Attorney General has an obligation to the American people to know what is going on under his watch, but throughout the hearing Holder continuously tried to distance himself from the activities of his staff. 

At one point during the hearing, Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.) told Holder, "You've not taken action, you've not fired anybody, you haven't changed policy, because it's clear you didn't enforce the policy before." 

Holder responded, "I've made personnel changes with regard to leadership positions.  We have moved people around.  We have instituted a series of policies now that I think are designed to make sure that doesn't happen again." 

McHenry countered, "An agent was murdered and your action is to move people around?  That seems to me to simply inconvenience people, not to rid them of federal employment." 

During her questioning of Holder, Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle (R-N.Y.) said, “I think it’s important to recognize that you, as the Attorney General, with all due respect, need to be held accountable, or someone does, as to what happened. Of all the issues that face this country, this is the issue that I hear from my district so frequently about. In fact, today I have no fewer than 30 questions from folks in my district who want to know what happened, why it happened, and who’s going to be held accountable.”  Buerkle went on to say, “With all due respect, yes you are [the Attorney General], but you are also accountable not only to the folks in my district, but to the American people.”

 

Buerkle then played a portion of video from a June 2011 hearing in which the spokesman for murdered U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry’s family asked if enough was being done to identify everyone involved, and if those involved would face charges.  Buerkle then asked Holder how far the investigation had come since June of last year.

Said Holder, “We’re certainly working now to, it’s an ongoing investigation, this is a very sensitive time, I’m not sure I can talk an awful lot about where the investigation is. I’ve indicated that I think we’re pretty close to making some announcements.”  Holder continued, “And with regard to people who were involved in Operation Fast and Furious, we are endeavoring to find out who made the determination to allow guns to walk.  I am not at liberty to talk about weapons that were used during the actual incident.”

After some additional back-and-forth discussion, Buerkle asked, “I was one of the members [of this committee] who called for your resignation. I feel that [as head of the] DOJ, that you’re responsible for all activities that fall under your umbrella. You’ve denied knowledge of the program and that accordingly you should not be held accountable. My question to you here today is what more could have possibly gone wrong? …How many more Border Patrol agents would have had to die for you to take responsibility?”

 

Holder tried to characterize the question as ridiculous, and never did answer it.


For gun owners, one of the most alarming and telling statements from Holder during the entire hearing was when he stated, "This administration has consistently favored the reinstitution of the assault weapons ban, it is something that we think was useful in the past with regard to the reduction that we've seen in crime and certainly would have a positive impact on our relationship and the crime situation in Mexico."  How renewing this misguided ban would have prevented the Administration’s lack of judgment in overseeing a gun running operation, though, is not clear.

 

Ranking Member Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) insisted that the Committee has obtained no evidence that Holder authorized gun walking in “Fast and Furious.”  Many other committee members on his side of the aisle echoed that sentiment throughout the hearing.  Earlier in the week, a committee minority report was released blaming federal agents in Arizona for the flawed operation and attempting to exonerate Justice Department officials.

 

Holder remained defiant and dismissive, even as he faced the specter of being held in contempt if he continues to stall requests to turn over documents.   Holder accused the Committee of playing political “gotcha” games in an election year.  "This has become political.  There is no attempt at any cover-up.  We have shared huge amounts of information."

The Committee is seeking about 93,000 documents, but the Justice Department has only produced 6,400 of those.  Holder said he will not hand over "deliberative materials" that came after Feb. 4, 2011, when the Committee began its review.  Congressman Dan Burton (R-Ind.) challenged Holder by saying, "I think you're hiding behind something here.  There's things you don't want us to see.  You ought to give us the documents." 

Eric Holder has not been honest with the American people, and we deserve better.  Eric Holder should resign.

TRENDING NOW
More Pushback on Credit Card Surveillance of Firearm Buyers

News  

Monday, September 26, 2022

More Pushback on Credit Card Surveillance of Firearm Buyers

As we’ve previously reported, on September 9, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) approved a Merchant Category Code (MCC) for firearm retailers. MCCs enable payment processors and banks to categorize, monitor, and collect data on various types of ...

Illinois Sets the Stage for Possible Unprecedented Crime Wave

News  

Monday, September 26, 2022

Illinois Sets the Stage for Possible Unprecedented Crime Wave

As part of a criminal justice “reform” effort, the state of Illinois is preparing to unleash the first statewide no-cash bail law, which will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2023, and the ramifications could ...

Court Rules Second Amendment Prohibits Federal Pre-Conviction Firearms Ban

News  

Monday, September 26, 2022

Court Rules Second Amendment Prohibits Federal Pre-Conviction Firearms Ban

Last week, a federal judge in the Western District of Texas ruled that a law which prohibits the acquisition of firearms by someone who is under felony indictment violates the Second Amendment. The decision to ...

Shipping Companies Prohibit the Lawful Shipping of Firearms

News  

Monday, September 19, 2022

Shipping Companies Prohibit the Lawful Shipping of Firearms

Wondering what federal law says regarding individuals who do not have a Federal Firearms License (FFL) that need to ship firearms? Well, if you go to the website for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and ...

Update: Further Dispatches from New York’s War on Guns

News  

Monday, September 26, 2022

Update: Further Dispatches from New York’s War on Guns

Speaking about her new gun control legislation, New York State Governor Kathy Hochul claimed that “we took swift and thoughtful action to keep New Yorkers safe…. we will continue leading the way forward and implementing ...

Brace Yourself: Biden Administration Reinterprets “Firearm,” Prepares Crackdown

News  

Monday, August 29, 2022

Brace Yourself: Biden Administration Reinterprets “Firearm,” Prepares Crackdown

When we say “brace yourself,” we’re not kidding. The pistol brace rule is coming as well. But first, a different sort of crackdown was unleashed on the nation this week, as an ATF rule published ...

OREGON: Vote NO on Ballot Measure 114!

News  

Thursday, September 15, 2022

OREGON: Vote NO on Ballot Measure 114!

Ballot Measure 114 is the nation’s most extreme gun control Initiative and will be voted on this November! The NRA has launched a website to inform voters why they must VOTE NO on Ballot Measure 114.  It ...

NRA Achieves Historical Milestone as 25 States Recognize Constitutional Carry

News  

Friday, April 1, 2022

NRA Achieves Historical Milestone as 25 States Recognize Constitutional Carry

Half the country will now enjoy the freedom to carry a handgun for self-defense without a permit from the state thanks to the tireless efforts of men and women of the National Rifle Association. 

A Decade Later, Remember New Orleans … Gun Confiscation Can (and Has) Happened in America

News  

Friday, August 21, 2015

A Decade Later, Remember New Orleans … Gun Confiscation Can (and Has) Happened in America

August 29th marks the 10-year anniversary of when Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans, La. The memory of the devastation wrought by the storm and the resulting chaos is a human tragedy of such a vast ...

South Carolina: The City of Columbia Passes More Unconstitutional Gun Control

Friday, September 23, 2022

South Carolina: The City of Columbia Passes More Unconstitutional Gun Control

Last week, the Columbia City Council passed Ordinance No.: 2022-080 to require its residents to report their lost or stolen firearms to the police within 24 hours or face up to a $500 fine. This is ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.