NY Democratic Congresswoman admits she hadn’t heard of Fast and Furious
posted at 5:25 pm on December 7, 2011 by Tina Korbe
The Daily Caller’s Michelle Fields captures this damaging moment for the camera. At a Tuesday Congressional Hispanic Caucus event, New York Democratic Rep. Nydia Velazquez froze when Fields asked her about Fast and Furious.
“Are you not familiar with that story?” Fields then asked. Velazquez responded unequivocally, “No, no.”
Appalling, right? But, just for fun, let’s cut the little lady some slack. She must be busy — she’s a congresswoman, after all. And if Attorney General Eric Holder doesn’t even have time to read his memos, why should Velazquez be expected to know about a major scandal to rock the administration?
Anyway, Velazquez isn’t the only member of Congress to be ignorant of the ill-advised Justice Department program that resulted in at least 11 violent crimes in the United States, the deaths of more than 200 Mexicans and the slaying of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry. According to Fields and her colleague Matthew Boyle, Rep. Jose Enrique Serrano, another New York Democrat, also admitted to TheDC that he was unaware of Fast and Furious.
Meantime, two other members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus had more to say on the subject, according to a report by Boyle.
Illinois Democratic Rep. Luis Gutierrez said he doesn’t think it’s fair to call for Eric Holder’s resignation quite yet, but, if the congressional investigation into Fast and Furious turns up additional crucial details, he might jump on the bandwagon.
“I assure you that if I find that he, with knowledge and premeditation and foresight, was totally irresponsible, then he should leave,” Gutierrez said.
Outgoing Caucus Chairman Charlie Gonzalez, a Democrat from Texas, said Holder’s high-ranking position in some ways exempts him from responsibility. Nobody could possibly expect somebody at the top of a department as large as Justice to know the day-to-day details of controversial operations, Gonzalez said. Nevertheless, he expects more of Holder than the stonewalling Congress has received thus far.
“I do think the attorney general has an obligation to be completely forthright with the Congress,” he said.
Both Gonzalez and Gutierrez cautioned their colleagues in Congress not to use the scandal for political gain and to respect the seriousness of the loss of life associated with the imprudent operation.