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Issa: Sack ATF Fast and Furious officials

Sept. 20, 2012 at 8:14 PM

WASHINGTON, Sept. 20 (UPI) -- A top U.S. House Republican says officials named in a Justice Department report on a botched gun-walking program should "find appropriate new occupations."

During a 3-hour hearing on Capitol Hill Thursday, Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz called the report, released Wednesday, fair and comprehensive, The Washington Post reported. The report followed an 18-month investigation into the flawed program and recommended disciplinary action against more than a dozen Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives officials.

Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., chairman of the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee, called the report a "huge step toward restoring public faith in the Justice Department" but said senior department officials -- including Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer, who heads the department's criminal division -- need to be held to account for the program.

Issa said discipline for the ATF agents should include dismissal.

"We expect that all 14 would find a way to find appropriate new occupations," he said.

Horowitz's report said the investigation determined U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder did not know about the controversial elements of the Fast and Furious program and was unaware of the tactics until learning of them from Congress.

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