House Republicans' unanimous decision to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt is continued evidence Congress is willing to do anything except work on creating policies to help the American people prosper.
If you, like me, love America, relish in its political history and believe in her promises of freedom, equality, justice, you may also find what is happening at the Capitol delusive, divisive and disturbing.
Mostly, I am disappointed, during an era of rampant unemployment and economic uncertainty the bicameral body of our democracy has decided time and tax dollars are best spent carrying out a personal vendetta against Eric Holder. It's obvious there are members of Congress who dislike the president so intently they've decided to use gunwalking, a policy Attorney General Holder did not create, in an effort to take down him and President Obama.
Holder became this nation's 82nd attorney general and the first African-American to hold the post in 2009. Operation Wide Receiver -- a gunwalking program created by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF) under George Bush, is being used to mar Holder's reputation and the entire Obama administration. Gunwalking began in 2006, three years prior to Holder taking office. The intent of the initiative was to have illegal weapons move into Mexican cartels where they could be tracked. The ATF believed doing so would lead to many high level arrests.
According to Holder, he nor the President had any knowledge of this program. The operation became public following the death of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry. Terry was killed by one of the weapons "walked" to Mexico. As a result, a congressional committee led by Rep. Darrell Issa of California has held nine inquisition-style hearings with Holder. During these hearings, only Holder has been questioned. No members of the ATF or those in high level positions at the Department of Justice during the time Operation Wide Receiver was authorized. If it is to be believed members of Congress merely want to explore how this program went awry, would it not be worthwhile to speak to those involved during the program's inception and implementation, in addition to Eric Holder?
Rep. Jason Chaffetz of Utah expressed to MSNBC's Luke Russert,
I don't care if its Republican or Democrat, you have to go in at look at this, our federal government cannot just give away 2000 guns to the drug cartels, have a death of a border patrol agent and then just ignore it. For the Democrats to suggest this is a witch hunt, it has nothing to do with Eric Holder, it has everything to do with the Department of Justice and justice in the United States of America, we have not gotten to the bottom of this.
What I am pleased about is that once again Republican hypocrisy is in full view for the American public to see. The livelihoods, personal savings and home values of many Americans continue to diminish. Yet Congress has made it clear they have no interest in restoring access to the American dream for the American people. Congress has shunned its commitment to every American family teetering dangerously close to the edge of financial despair if not outright ruin. Where are the jobs? I for one am completely unclear how nine hearings with Attorney General Holder is moving us toward job creation and domestic economic security.
Several congressional Hdouse members have insisted obtaining justice for Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, is the impetus for the Holder hearings. This is even harder to believe as the deaths of over 6,000 American troops in Iraq and Afghanistan have not been enough to warrant a congressional hearing on why the U.S. is still embroiled in Afghanistan, bankrupting American taxpayers to the tune of $300 million per day.
And then there are the Democrats. While I am disheartened discrediting the president via Eric Holder is more important to Congress than ensuring no child in America goes hungry, isn't stuffed into an overcrowded class room this fall or has parents who are gainfully employed, I'm outright disgusted by the continued spineless behavior of Democrats. Republicans have shown a willingness to be incredibly ruthless and openly hostile. So why aren't Democrats on television, on Twitter, at a town hall being brutally candid about what their congressional counterparts are up to?
While I will always believe in America, an America so exceptional, I believe within our citizenry we have the ability to solve the major socio-economic issues plaguing the American people, I find it exacting to be optimistic about our future. As contempt charges for Eric Holder will now head out of committee and to the full House of Representatives, I struggle to maintain faith in Congress , it's ability to do what is right, or its two parties, filled with hypocrites on one side of the aisle and cowards on the other.
Follow Lauren Brown Jarvis on Twitter: www.twitter.com/heyheylbj