The Contemptible Eric Holder

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It is also likely some Democrats felt pressured by the National Rifle Association (NRA), who warned House lawmakers they would score today’s vote. Last week they sent a letter to every House member condemning Holder’s “open defiance” of the GOP probe. Democrats were taken aback, with Rep. Xavier Becerra (D-CA) contending the organization is “playing politics,” and arguing that the contempt vote “has nothing to do with the specific use or ownership of guns.” Becerra also claimed the NRA’s involvement “shows how far Republicans allowed the issue of government oversight to descend into an issue of Republican overreach.”

How the NRA’s involvement translates to Republican overreach is anyone’s guess, when one considers the gun rights organization endorsed conservative Democratic candidates in 53 House races during the 2010 election. But it is also irrelevant. Barring the incredibly unlikely defection of Republicans to Mr. Holder’s side in today’s vote, their numerical control of the House, coupled with even the most modest Democrat support, makes the contempt of Congress citation a virtual done deal.

What comes next? A number of options are available. An 1857 statute allows the House to refer the matter to the Justice Department for prosecution in federal court. Yet the DOJ would almost certainly exercise “prosecutorial discretion,” and refuse to charge Mr. Holder. The House could file suit in federal court seeking a declaratory judgment that Holder is in contempt of Congress, and an injunction ordering him to comply with the congressional subpoenas. That too is unlikely. Even if the House could get a court to grant such a judgment, a legal battle could take years. The House could send its sergeant-at-arms to arrest Mr. Holder and hold him until his contempt is purged. Yet this could result in a standoff between the House sergeant-at-arms and the executive-branch police tasked with protecting Holder, or one between judicial marshals and executive-branch police. The courts could also be involved here as well, inquiring into the House’s jurisdiction to arrest.

The House could impeach Mr. Holder, but the likelihood of a Democrat-controlled Senate convicting him is next to nil. They might even use their constitutionally-mandated power of the purse to severely cut the budgets of the ATF, and/or the DOJ, or refuse to pay Holder’s salary until he purges his contempt citation. They could also censure him, or continue to hold hearings in an effort to embarrass the Attorney General. A second House vote could also be held to sue Mr. Holder in the civil courts, aimed at obtaining a subpoena that would force the administration to release the documents in question.

With so many options, it is likely the court of public opinion will play a decisive roll in where all of this eventually leads. A Rasmussen Reports poll released last Friday showed that 40 percent of likely voters want Holder to resign, 27 percent think he should stay, and 33 percent are undecided. Yet that poll must be measured against the reality that only 50 percent of likely voters have either “very closely” or “somewhat closely” followed the Fast and Furious scandal as it has unfolded.

Much of that is undoubtedly due to a media blackout that has been as calculatingly indifferent as possible regarding the scandal. It is virtually inconceivable that the same indifference would apply to a Republican administration scandal involving high-level government officials, the murder of one (possibly two) government agents as well as hundreds of Mexican civilians, and a presidential executive order attempting to keep information about it all under wraps.

Whether the media can continue to maintain such indifference remains to be seen. Today is the same day the Supreme Court reveals its ruling on the healthcare bill. Mr. Holder should be eternally grateful for such a monumental diversion. Yet a contempt of Congress citation can hardly be ignored indefinitely. As of now, no elected Democrats have joined 129 House and five Senate Republicans in demanding Holder’s resignation. Yet until yesterday, no House Democrats had expressed support for finding Mr. Holder in contempt of Congress either. Things change for both politicians and the media–especially in an election year.

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  • Steve Redder

    This decision is going to create a fire storm. I hope the repubs have a response .

  • Spider

    When Eric Holder first got into office he said "I'm going after the Bush administration" not "I'm going to protect the American people by making sure the law is enforced" He also said he wanted to put the CIA agent heroes who interrogated KSM in prison for doing what was necessary to protect the country from another attack with weapons of mass destruction (airplanes). Then he was part of a scheme to prove to the world that yes most guns used by the cartels in Mexico really are coming from the U.S so he could put through draconian gun bans around the country.Then he lied to congress about his involvement. If he wasn't involved then who was? This is why he deserves exactly what he gets – hopefully resignation, impeachment or even prison time. It looks like his chickens have come home to roost as Jerimiah Right used to say.

  • PhillipGaley

    Yeah, . . . I would say that, Holder is contemptible, . . . c-o-n-t-e-m-p-t-i-b-l-e, . . . and, Xavier Becerra, and that one Rep. (At the moment, I forget his name.) who wonders why Congress doesn't hold hearings concerning the radicalization of Christian Caucasian women, . . . as always, throughout history has occurred, we need a good war, . . . in which a lotta the bad people are simply swept away, . . .

  • EthanP

    On CNN, Solidad O'brien had a journalist (sorry, I forget her name) who claims that no guns walked. This despite the fact that Holder et al say they did. Could this be a new Left wing strategy?
    As for the Idea that Fast & Furious was to be an effort to gain traction for gun control. I know pundits a laughing at the idea. This includes Bill O'Rielly. Yet there are apparently Emails. And this idea was first broached by CBS and the LA Times, neither of which are gun friendly organizations.

  • BLJ

    Me + Louisville Slugger Bat + Holders head = Nirvana

    • amused

      …and you'll still have guns walking to Mexico , because the good citizens of Arizona , can legally ,and anxiously DO sell guns to whomsoever they wish , with the full knowledge of WHERE those guns will be going , to transfer sales to whoever the buyers wish to transfer to , in effect Arizona facilitates the straw sales going on ,and then uses as an excuse " well if the borders were secured , there would be no problem . What they do , is infact PERFECTLY LEGAL in Arizona , making it impossible for ATF to arrest ANYONE purchasing or transferring weapons . They had to PROVE WHERE THE weapons were going before probable cause could be used io make the arrests in Arizona,in order to do THAT , weapons had to walk / yea the ATF botched it but only to a degree , and if a US Agent hadn't been killed , no one would give a rat's arse . But the Re[ublicans now have a " cause celbre " to pursue according to their original agenda .

  • pierce

    The only thing I don't understand is why Holder has lasted this long. It must be because Obama has either tunnel
    vision, or has blinders on. Obama just can't be as stupid as he is appearing to be. In either event Holder and Obama have something big to hide to be this uncooperative. The only way to get an answer is the one on the table, Contempt of Congress, for they are both showing contempt for the American people. The evidence is piling up, remember this come November, but what bothers me is" Are the American people stupid or don't they care?"

    • aharris

      Let's be realisitic here. Obama pitches anyone who becomes a political liability. At this point in time, Holder would be gone if Obama could safely throw him under the bus. We all know it. So, since Holder isn't under the bus, the big question is … what's he hiding and how damaging is it?

  • lovethyneighbor

    nothing is going to happen because the "fast and furious scandal" is not really a scandal, read this weeks edition of Fortune magazine. The so-called "scandal" is nonsense cooked up by the gun lobby.

    • BLJ

      Yeah and I can sell you the Brooklyn Bridge. Real cheap.

      • Jim_C

        Still…nothing is going to happen. Bank on it.

        • BLJ

          You may be correct, but that does not mean that Holder is not an evil man.

    • amused

      Ahhhh ! I knew there was SOMEONE with a functioning brain around here .P.S. dont let BLJ rile you , he's an idiot on whom his own advice should be inflicted with a Louisville Slugger

  • Roger

    Holder needs to go. But we know that Boehner is in the pocket of Obama and those golf outings.

    So, they will put on a show to distract us then do what they want anyhow.

    Like the supreme court has done this session. Ask question so we know they understand the issues they later ignore.

  • H&R_ Barack

    RE: "The Contemptible Eric Hold Himself’s Corrupt Agenda…"

    ….Obama & Eric Hold Himself''s administration, – IS A HATE GROUP.

    • Dennis Metz

      of course it is a hate group and they protected the black panthers

  • Steve Chavez


    Obama, and Holder, bypass our laws to appease their ILLEGAL AMIGOS in Mexico so we need to appease Mexican officials by handing over Holder, and eventually Obama, so they can be with their AMIGOS. Do they allow K-Y in Mexican prisons?

  • WilliamJamesWard

    Holder is guilty of contempt of Congress and Obama of contempt of America and both are
    congenital liars. There has been enough governmnt robbery of American citizens, scamming
    the population into continuous hard times, the Congress, the Courts and Obama Administration
    scammers they are all part of the Great American Scam, Vote in a new Administration, and
    entrely new Congress and impeach the Supreme Court which as Roberts has shown us,
    it always has a leftist fixer imbedded to politicise law rather than uphold the Constitution.

  • mrbean

    The Black Caucus plans on playing the race card by walking out during the voting for contempt of Congress. Typical of all blacks at all levels. In Congress it is now " It awl dah white man fault dey dun beez keepin him down" Just like the Prez: "It awl dat white man Bush fault cause he dun beez keepin meh down" yonowatahsayin'.

    • Ghostwriter

      mrbean,not all blacks are like what you say. That is ridiculous and stupid. And,your "Amos n' Andy" routine is still unfunny.

      • Amused

        just mr.bean being the idiot he's advertised to be .

  • Dennis Metz

    The only thing I don't understand is why Holder has lasted this long. It must be because Obama has either tunnel
    vision, or has blinders on. Obama just can't be as stupid as he is appearing to be. In either event Holder and Obama have something big to hide to be this uncooperative. The only way to get an answer is the one on the table, Contempt of Congress, for they are both showing contempt for the American people. The evidence is piling up, remember this come November, but what bothers me is" Are the American people stupid or don't they care?"

    blacks will protect other blacks no matter what, they do not care about the United States of America, they care about the black cacus , blacks have made deals with the devil. any black knows he is protected by other blacks so he can commit any crime he wishes, why do you think any juror with blacks on it find it very difficult to find a po black guilty.

    • Ghostwriter

      Not all blacks think the way you say,Dennis. That's as dumb and bigoted as I've ever heard anyone say.

  • ross1948

    If Holder is contemptible, what does that make his Puppeteer?

  • pierce

    One of the poorest appointments that BHO has made. Reflects the racist views of the President, and in fact is a racist himself.