Rep. James Sensenbrenner, R-WI, questioned Attorney General Eric Holder Thursday about Operation Fast and Furious, bluntly raising the specter of impeachment, apparently of Holder. However, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-TX, sought clarification out of concern Sesenbrenner had threatened to impeach Barack Obama.
The exchange came as Sensenbrenner asked Holder who was responsible for the Justice Department’s misleading Congress about the gun-running operation. Lying, Sensenbrenner reminded him is a felony. “I don’t want to say that you have committed a felony, Mr. Attorney General, but obviously there have been statements so misleading that a letter had to be withdrawn,” he said. “I think some heads should roll.”
“Nobody in the Justice Department has lied,” Holder insisted, because everyone lacked the “requisite intent to come up with something that would be considered perjury or a lie.” However, a letter sent to Congress “was withdrawn because there was information that was in there that was inaccurate.”
“There is really no responsibility in the Justice Department,” Sensenbrenner said. “If we don’t get to the bottom of this, and that requires your assistance, there is only one alternative that Congress has, and it’s called impeachment.” He said impeachment “is an expensive and messy affair, and I don’t want to go this far, but if we keep on getting pushed down the road…and we don’t get closure to this, what is Congress to do?”
Rep. Jackson Lee attempted to make what she called a “parliamentary inquiry” about whom Sensenbrenner intended to impeach — Holder or Obama. After her question was ruled out-of-order, she interjected, “This has no basis in law for any impeachment proceeding whether it’s for you or the president of the United States.”
Rep. Paul Gosar has called for a vote of no confidence in Holder, a move The Daily Caller rightly describes as “largely symbolic.”
It is time for House Republicans to fight back. A gun-running/gun control operation claimed the lives of two uniformed men and countless others; the Justice Department misled Congress while covering its tracks; and Holder continues to laugh at Republicans who make speeches about “the rule of law” but lack the mettle to enforce it.