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Begun during President George W. Bush’s term and continued during the Obama administration, Fast and Furious was an attempt to get guns into the hands of Mexican drug lords so the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) could build cases against high-level drug criminals rather than their lower-level workers. Instead, at least 2,000 guns were lost and the weapons have been traced to the deaths of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent Jaime Zapata, and dozens of Mexican civilians.
Holder has been criticized for testimony he gave to a House committee in May saying he had just recently learned about the gun-walking operation. Republicans cite a memo from the previous July that indicates the attorney general knew about the operation then.
Issa indicated that his patience with Holder was wearing thin. “I am asking for the president to stop having full confidence in Eric Holder unless Eric Holder can stop having full confidence in an array of people who are part of a problem that has not yet really been fixed. That is sort of a stay there and fix it, or go. But that is not for me to decide. It is for the president to decide,” he said.
The issue has apparently also tested Holder's patience. On Tuesday, he spoke sharply to a Daily Caller reporter who approached him after a White House event and asked about the calls for his resignation. “You guys need to – you need to stop this. It’s not an organic thing that’s just happening. You guys are behind it,” the publication quoted Holder as saying.