Congressman Introduces 'Contempt Act' to Withhold Eric Holder's Salary

Susan Jones | April 16, 2014 | 7:48am EDT
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Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-Texas) (AP File Photo)

( - Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-Texas) has introduced a bill called the "Contempt Act," which would prevent current and future federal employees from collecting their taxpayer-funded salaries as long as they're being held in contempt of Congress.

The bill, which has no chance of becoming law in a divided Congress, currently would apply to one man -- Attorney General Eric Holder, with whom Farenthold tangled at a congressional hearing last week:

"I'm committed to maintaining the constitutional balance of power and the authority that this branch -- this Legislative Branch -- has, and I just don't think it's appropriate that Mr. Holder be here," Farenthold told the Judiciary Committee last Tuesday.

"If an American citizen had not complied with one of the Justice Department subpoenas, they would be in jail, not sitting here in front, testifying. I realize there are questions to be asked. I'll yield the remainder of my time."

Rep. Farenthold released the following statement on April 15:

In 2012, the House of Representatives voted to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress for refusing to turn over documents related to the botched Fast and Furious gun-running sting operation – despite this fact, he is still receiving his paycheck courtesy of American taxpayers.

In the next few weeks, the House is set to hold former IRS department head Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress for her role in the IRS’ political targeting of conservative groups. While Ms. Lerner has since retired from the IRS, my bill will at least prevent current and future federal employees, like Attorney General Holder, from continuing to collect their taxpayer-paid salaries while held in contempt of Congress.

The American people should not be footing the bill for federal employees who stonewall Congress or rewarding government officials’ bad behavior. If the average American failed to do his or her job, he or she would hardly be rewarded. High-ranking government officials should be treated no differently than everyone else.

Also See:
Holder to Gohmert on Contempt: ‘You Don’t Want to Go There, Buddy’

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