After several hours of often acid-tongued debate Thursday, the House of Representatives approved by a vote of 255 to 67 a resolution to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt over the release of documents related to the "Fast and Furious" operation. Only
Scores of Democrats, including Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer, joined the Congressional Black Caucus in walking out rather than vote on the resolution that several considered outrageous, outlandish and out-of-line. It was the first time an attorney general has ever been held in contempt by the House.
The CBC had issued a statement ahead of time on the walk-out:
“We adamantly oppose this partisan attack and refuse to participate in any vote that would tarnish the image of Congress or of an attorney general who has done nothing but work tirelessly to protect the rights of the American people. We must reflect upon why we are elected to this body and choose now to stand up for justice. We call upon all members of Congress to stand with us during a press conference on the Capitol Building steps during this appalling series of votes to discuss our nation's most significant priority—creating jobs. At this critically important time in our nation, we must work as colleagues rather than political enemies.
The roster of Democratic shame (updated thanks to David Nir; asterisks denote members of Blue Dog coalition):
Jason Altmire (PA-04, lost primary in PA-12) *
John Barrow (GA-12) *
Dan Boren (OK-02, retiring) *
Leonard Boswell (IA-03) *
Ben Chandler (KY-06) *
Mark Critz (PA-12)
Joe Donnelly (IN-02, running for IN-Sen) *
Kathy Hochul (NY-26)
Ron Kind (WI-03)
Larry Kissell (NC-08) *
Jim Matheson (UT-02, running in UT-04) *
Mike McIntyre (NC-07) *
Bill Owens (NY-23, running in NY-21)
Collin Peterson (MN-07) *
Nick Rahall (WV-03)
Mike Ross (AR-04, retiring) *
Tim Walz (MN-01)
Here is the White House statement on the vote.