Outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder’s legacy – or at least a big part of it – will be obstructing the investigation into the Internal Revenue Service targeting of conservative groups, said Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), who set a low bar for the next attorney general.
Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
“Whoever is going to be next, they have to be better than Eric Holder was,” Jordan told TheBlaze on the day Holder announced he was retiring from his controversial tenure as head of the Justice Department.
Jordan is the chairman of the subcommittee for regulatory affairs for the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, in which he has probed the IRS targeting of tea party and conservative groups.
Primarily, he points to Holder naming DOJ attorney Barbara Bosserman, who contributed more than $6,000 to President Barack Obama and the Democratic National Committee, to run the investigation.
“It just shows the arrogance that is in this attorney general’s agency during his tenure,” Jordan said.
Every House Republican and 26 House Democrats voted for a resolution asking for a special prosecutor to investigate the IRS scandal. Holder ignored the resolution.
Not only that, but Jordan points out that Holder is stepping down in the middle of other unanswered questions, such as Operation Fast and Furious and Solyndra – matters that were not resolved but dropped out of focus.
Jordan said of the entire IRS scandal, “This is like a third rate, B actor crime drama.”
The reason, he is because of a predictable script. First, he said, Obama talks about shadowy conservative groups, then Democratic senators write letters to the IRS demanding an investigation. Once the IRS is caught for their targeting, they blame lower level employees. When that didn’t work, they blamed Russell George, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration for being unfair.
“The last thing they do what everyone else does when they’re caught in a crime, they lose the evidence,” Jordan said, referring to the lost e-mails from Lois Lerner, the former head of the tax exempt organizations unit for the IRS.
Still Lerner came forward this week for an interview with Politico and refused to apologize or say she did anything wrong.
“She knows that the investigation at the Justice Department is such a joke that she’ll even talk to the press,” Jordan said. “But she won’t talk to the one entity that represents the people of this country, the United States Congress. She won’t answer our questions.”
After making an opening statement declaring her innocence last year, Lerner asserted that she had a Fifth Amendment right not to be cross examined by the oversight committee.
One step in the investigation is seeing if the Justice Department, through the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, will try to compel her to testify, Jordan said.
“One thing she said in the interview is, I’ve done nothing wrong,” Jordan said. “Well if you’ve done nothing wrong, come and answer my questions. This just underscores what a joke this investigation is at the Justice Department.”