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Truth and TransparencyPosted Friday, December 2, 2011, at 4:50 PM
The more I learn about the Fast and Furious program, the more concerns come to my mind about good government decision making and trust in our government. The Fast and Furious program, initiated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE), is an undercover operation designed to nab gun smugglers taking US firearms into Mexico and to the country's violent drug cartels. However, bureau agents lost track of as many as 2,500 high-powered firearms, some of which later turned up at crime scenes on both sides of the border, including two at the murder scene of United States Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry in Arizona.
In May of 2011, Attorney General Holder testified before the House Judiciary Committee that he hadn't learned about Fast and Furious until a few weeks earlier. Congressional investigators, however, recently released memos sent to Attorney General Holder in July 2010 describing Fast and Furious by name.
Then on November 8, 2011, Attorney General Holder testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee where he admitted the Fast and Furious program was "flawed in its concept and flawed in its execution." In that same hearing, Attorney General Holder went on to admit he first learned about Fast and Furious at the beginning of the year and should have been more clear in his May testimony to the House Judiciary Committee that his knowledge of the program dated back months, not weeks.
Just this week, on November 30, 2011, the Obama Administration abruptly sealed court records containing details of how Mexican drug smugglers murdered the Brian Terry, the United States Border Patrol Agent, with a gun connected to the Fast and Furious program. This just isn't right. This is a typical Washington move and doesn't make sense. We need to know exactly what happened.
Expecting the United States' top prosecutor to respect the law and be truthful when testifying before Congress is vital to enable trust in our government. We all know making good decisions and being truthful to the people whom the Department of Justice serves cannot be overstated. That's just common sense.
The Fast and Furious scandal has spiraled out of control, and it has become evident that Mr. Holder is not capable of serving in his capacity as Attorney General to make good decisions and enable trust in our government. It's for these reasons, I am asking Attorney General Holder to resign. Many other members of congress share my concerns. In fact, 51 other Members of Congress and two Senators are calling on Attorney General Eric Holder to resign.
It's time for the Department of Justice to be truthful with the American people.
Stephen L. Fincher
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Stephen Fincher is the U.S. Representative for Tennessee's 8th congressional district.
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