U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder told students at the University of Baltimore Law School on Thursday that he’s considering stepping down and letting someone else take over his job for President Barack Obama’s second term.
“That’s something that I’m in the process now of trying to determine,” Holder said, according to a report by CBS News. “I have to think about, can I contribute in a second term?”
He reportedly added: “[I have to] really ask myself the question about, do I think there are things that I still want to do? Do I have gas left in the tank? It’s been an interesting and tough four years, so I really just don’t know.”
The nation’s first African American attorney general has not been without his critics. Republicans have especially hammered Holder over the “Fast and Furious” scandal, in which guns purchased in the U.S. and fitted with tracking devices by federal authorities ended up in the hands of Mexican drug cartels, and in some cases were discovered at murder scenes.
Holder was held in Contempt of Congress after he refused to turn over documents relating to the operation, saying that it would compromise other ongoing investigations. President Obama ultimately exercised executive privilege to safeguard the files, putting them outside of the House Oversight Committee’s legal purview.
The Department of Justice’s inspector general cleared Holder of any wrongdoing in the matter, which investigative reporting by Fortune magazine revealed that the scandal was not actually law enforcement’s fault. Instead, dozens of interviews revealed that weak gun laws are what prevented law enforcement from acting against people who purchased guns and turned them over to the cartels, in a practice known as straw buying that’s legal in many states and supported by Republican lawmakers.
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