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Recommending that Attorney General Eric Holder Be Held in Contempt

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. SCHIFF. I thank the gentleman for yielding.

I rise in strong opposition to this resolution. What began as a legitimate investigation into an operation called Fast and Furious has, unfortunately, degenerated into yet another partisan political attack in an election year. And it's a shame this is taking place for many reasons. First and foremost, because the American people have a legitimate interest in getting to the bottom of the gun violence that spills across our border, with the tens of thousands of weapons made in America that end up in the hands of the cartels. But instead of looking into that investigation, instead of finding out what we can do about this gun violence, this has now become a fight over documents, a fight that is completely unnecessary and unjustified.

The very documents that are at issue in this resolution were created after this operation had long since been shut down. They will shed no light on the operation. They will shed no light on what we can do to stop this gun trafficking. But then that's not the goal. The goal here is simply the fight.

The Justice Department has bent over backwards, produced thousands of documents. The Attorney General has testified eight or nine times before the House, has made every effort to cooperate in this investigation, but the committee will not take ``yes'' for an answer because that's not the goal. The fight is the goal.

And so we are here when we should be doing the Nation's business, when we should be working on legislation to create jobs. Instead, we are here in what is nothing less than a partisan brawl over nothing. And you know how this will end? It will end months or years from now with a settlement in Federal District Court in which the Justice Department will provide the very same documents they have already offered to provide. But we will have wasted our time; we will have wasted our money; and we will have wasted the precious opportunity to get the people's business done here in the House.

In case the majority hasn't noticed, we are in the midst of a very difficult economy, where people are struggling to find work. They are not struggling to find another partisan fight on the House floor. This is something that cried out for resolution, but those cries were ignored. I urge a ``no'' vote.


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