United States Attorney General Eric Holder testified to the House Judiciary Committee Wednesday, addressing both the Justice Department’s criminal inquiry into the IRS after it was revealed the agency was politically targeting conservative groups, as well as the Justice Department’s secret seizure of Associated Press telephone records during an investigation of leaks of classified security information to the media.
These two scandals along with ongoing revelations in the investigation of how the administration handled the September 11, 2012, attacks in Benghazi on a U.S. consulate, have rocked Washington, with many in the media and both parties on Capitol Hill criticizing the White House.
Congressional Republicans and Democrats challenged Holder in often testy exchanges Wednesday over the DOJ’s handling of the investigation of national security leaks and its failure to talk to The Associated Press before issuing subpoenas. Holder repeated that he had recused himself from the investigation before the AP probe, but defended the department’s inquiry. Holder also faced questions on the discovery late last week that the IRS had been targeting conservative groups for over 18 months.
“I simply don’t know,” Holder commented on his knowledge of the scope of the IRS misconduct. As of now, investigators believe the political targeting began at IRS offices in the Cincinnati area. “We’ve only begun our investigation. … We will be appropriately aggressive and let the facts take us where they may.”
On ‘Real News’ Wednesday the panel reviewed and discussed what we know so far about both the IRS and AP probe scandals, and what this says about the Obama administration as a whole.