Judiciary GOP: DOJ Defense of Holder Testimony Proof That He's 'Hiding from the Truth'
Goodlatte said the Wednesday deadline is still in effect as the committee "anxiously awaits" a response from Holder, not an underling.
“Attorney General Holder still has yet to respond to our letter. He can’t outsource the responsibility for his actions to lower level staff—the buck stops with him. The American people and Congress deserve answers and accountability from Attorney General Holder."
Sensenbrenner stressed that he's "not motivated by partisanship, but by truth."
"As former chairman and 35-year veteran of the House Judiciary Committee, I’ve sought answers to tough questions from both Republican and Democrat-appointed cabinet members," the Wisconsin Republican continued. "…And once again, Eric Holder is hiding from the truth."
"In lieu of a genuine response, he tasked Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Peter J. Kadzik with drafting a defense," Sensenbrenner said. "This is insulting and further proof that the buck doesn’t stop with Attorney General Holder. Not only did the letter come from a low-level staffer at DOJ, not Holder himself, it fails to answer the questions raised by his misleading testimony."
"…Congress and the American people deserve an explanation, on the record, from Attorney General Holder. It is clear Eric Holder is dodging accountability and the truth. He is unfit to lead the Department of Justice."
White House press secretary Jay Carney told reporters at today's daily briefing that Obama and his team "believe that the attorney general has the intellect, experience, and integrity to efficiently run the Department of Justice and not get distracted by the partisans who seem more interested in launching political attacks than cooperating with him to protect the security and constitutional rights of the American people."
Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) said he's with Goodlatte in not crossing the line to calling Holder's actions perjury just yet.
"I'm going right to the line. He certainly misled Congress. Perjury is very finely tuned crime, has to be looked at very carefully," King said on Fox today.
"This is the attorney general of the United States, and before he is accused of perjury everything should be done to make sure it is done the right way if any kind of charges are required, but again, at the very least, Eric Holder misled Congress," he added. "He failed to fulfill his obligation when the attorney general should do, and that is be honest with Congress. Whether or not it rises to the level of a felony, again that remains to be seen seen."
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) also carefully tread around the question of perjury, saying Holder "should ask himself whether he's really effectively serving the president of the United States."
"But clearly there have been some contradictory statements, and the press understandably, should be concerned about what we have found about their tactics," McCain said.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), expressing frustration about the administration's continued deflection of the scandals, was asked on Fox today if there's anything GOP lawmakers can do better returning from the Memorial Day recess.
"I would call Eric Holder back and say, 'Now tell us again what you did with James Rosen.' I would subpoena every survivor in Benghazi and challenge the administration to make them available to the Congress for oversight purposes, and I would call the lady back that look the Fifth Amendment and try to find out what the hell she did," he said in reference to Lois Lerner, who led the IRS' tax-exempt division.
"We know nothing about these three scandals and Democrats are trying to make us to be the bad guys," Graham continued. "I've done nothing wrong. Darrell Issa has nothing wrong. He didn't go before the Congress and say he was uninvolved when he was."