WASHINGTON -- Republicans in Congress will file a civil lawsuit over President Barack Obama's invoking of executive privilege in connection with Operation Fast and Furious, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Sunday on CBS' "Face the Nation."
The House of Representatives voted on Thursday to hold U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress for refusing to hand over documents relating to a congressional inquiry into the failed gun-trafficking investigation. But the Justice Department has declined to prosecute Holder because the president invoked executive privilege to shield the documents.
"That's why we're also going to file in district court a civil suit over the issue of executive privilege," Boehner said, adding that Republicans would file the suit sometime in the next few weeks.
Guns sold at a store under surveillance during the Fast and Furious operation were recovered at the crime scene where U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was murdered in 2010.
"The American people have a right to know what happened here," Boehner said. "Brian Terry's family has a right to know what happened."
"The only facts that we've received about this entire Fast and Furious operation came from whistleblowers and others associated with it," he added. "We got no information that helped in our investigation from the Justice Department at any point."
Added Boehner: "The American people deserve the truth."
On "Fox News Sunday," White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew called the Republicans' pursuit of additional documents a "fishing expedition." Obama administration officials have testified at 11 hearings on the issue and provided thousands of documents.