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Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Darrell Issa: Reprimand of 'Fast and Furious' official justifies Eric Holder contempt lawsuit -- By Susan Ferrechio, The Washington Examiner


FILE - This March 26, 2014 file photo shows House Oversight Committee Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif. on Capitol Hill in Washington. Issa is doggedly pursuing the question of whether military personnel were told to "stand down" during the 2012 deadly assault on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, despite the insistence of military leaders and other Republicans that it never happened. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa believes new disciplinary action against a government operative in the “Fast and Furious” gun running scandal reinforces a Congressional contempt charge against Attorney General Eric Holder.

Issa, R-Calif., said former Arizona U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke “undoubtedly deserved” the reprimand he received from the Arizona State Bar for leaking information to the press about the gun-running operation. Issa said it also justifies the GOP-led lawsuit against Holder for information relating to the matter.

“Dennis Burke's disciplinary agreement with the Arizona State Bar makes clear his belief that Eric Holder's Justice Department was more interested in politically protecting itself than giving Congress full information about what happened in Operation Fast and Furious,” Issa said on Monday.

Burke was reprimanded last week by the Arizona Bar for leaking classified Fast and Furious documents to two media outlets.

Republican lawmakers are entangled with Holder in a court case stemming from a June 2012 House vote to hold him in contempt of Congress for failing to turn over documents and emails related to the gun-trafficking case.

Both sides are preparing to present arguments before a federal judge, who will then issue a judgement in the case. So far, the judge has rejected efforts by the Justice Department to dismiss the House lawsuit.

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