U.S. Congressman Tom Cole (OK-4) released the following statement after the White House asserted executive privilege to prevent the release of documents subpoenaed by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee to complete their investigation into Operation Fast and Furious:
"President Obama's assertion of executive privilege can only be interpreted as a desperate attempt to hide the truth about Fast and Furious. This investigation could have been completed months ago, but the repeated refusal of Eric Holder's Justice Department to cooperate has left the Oversight Committee with no choice but to pursue contempt charges.
"If the relevant documents really are privileged, the White House would have invoked executive privilege when the investigation began. Claiming executive privilege at this late date is nothing but a last-ditch effort to avoid accountability for this shocking failure of judgment.
"Congress and the Justice Department should be working together toward the common goal of providing answers to the American people and ensuring that a debacle like Fast and Furious never happens again. Today's developments confirm that while the House Oversight Committee is seeking the truth, the White House is actively working to conceal it.
"I appreciate my colleague James Lankford's thoughtful leadership on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and join Oklahomans in supporting his vote in committee to hold the attorney general in contempt."