Issa/Holder Meeting Ends With No Resolution, Contempt Proceedings Still Loom
Today’s meeting between Attorney General Holder and House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa does not seem to have been very productive:
A House panel is expected to vote Wednesday to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress after a last-ditch effort to reach a deal over documents related to Operation Fast and Furious appeared to fail.
After a Tuesday evening meeting with Holder and other lawmakers in the Capitol, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) said he was “disappointed” that the attorney general had not come with the documents demanded by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.
Issa, Holder’s chief interlocutor in a saga that has lasted more than a year, said unless Holder provides the paperwork, the contempt vote would proceed Wednesday morning.
Issa also called on President Obama to press Holder “to be more cooperative.”
Holder emerged from the meeting considerably later, and accused Issa of being consumed with “political gamesmanship.”
Holder said he offered to make documents Issa has requested available to the chairman on the condition that the powerful Republican drop the two outstanding subpoenas he has issued to the department. The documents Issa wants are related to the panel’s 16-month investigation of the failed Fast and Furious gun-tracking operation.
Holder said Issa rejected that offer and demanded that Holder fork over the documents to his committee, while offering no assurances that he would drop the contempt vote scheduled for 10 a.m. on Wednesday or consider the subpoenas satisfied.
“I think the ball’s in their court,” said Holder. “They rejected what I thought was an extraordinary offer on our part.”
Or, you know, you could just give them the documents they asked for.
I’m guessing there are backroom talks going on even now, so we’l see how this plays out, but we may well see a House Committee hold the Attorney General in contempt tomorrow morning.