Hoyer Says Holder Contempt Resolution 'Distracts' Congress

June 26, 2012 - 5:58 PM

Steny Hoyer

House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer of Md., in Washington, D.C.  (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

(CNSNews.com) – House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) on Tuesday said that the contempt resolution against Attorney General Eric Holder that the Republicans will bring up for a vote "distracts the Congress of the United States from dealing with the most important challenge confronting us, and that’s creating jobs for our people."

At his weekly “pen-and-pad” news briefing, Hoyer berated his GOP colleagues for pursing the contempt resolution against Holder for refusing to produce Justice Department records in connection with a committee probe into Operation Fast and Furious.

“Unfortunately, the Republicans continue to seek and practice confrontation over consensus,” Hoyer said.

“That’s true on the highway bill, was true on the student loan bill. I think we may have overcome that. And it is absolutely true on what Republicans have now proposed in terms of the contempt citation being approved by the House to hold the Attorney General of the United States in contempt.”

The contempt resolution was passed by the House Oversight and Government Reform last week, and is headed for a vote in the House of Representatives on Thursday.

“In less than nine days, this Republican-led House rushes to judgment, creates confrontation, and distracts the Congress of the United States from dealing with the most important challenge confronting us, and that’s creating jobs for our people,” Hoyer said.

Under Operation Fast and Furious, the Obama administration allowed straw purchaser to buy guns inside the U.S. for Mexican drug cartels and then smuggle them into Mexico.

Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), the ranking Democrat on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, joined Hoyer at the briefing.

Cummings said that Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), the committee’s Republican chairman, was wrong to pursue contempt charges against Holder.

“The 16-month investigation has found no link whatsoever between the Attorney General and Gunwalker,” said Cummings.

Cummings affirmed his belief that the attorney general had no involvement in the scandal.

“It is clear, from us looking at all the testimony that has been produced, that the Attorney General did not know about these tactics in Fast and Furious,” Cummings said. “He did not condone them. He did not authorize them and Mr. Issa knows that.”