ISSA: Well, if we want to look at the Supreme Court, in Nixon, they made it very clear. Even the president -- and certainly all the agencies -- cannot hold back information related to covering up criminal activities or talking about them. That's what we're looking for here.
We're looking for how the American people were lied on February 4, 2011, and 10 months passed before the truth came out from the administration, if the (ph) communication during that 10-month period between an outright lie and lots of other activities that went on, going after whistleblowers, all kinds of things that went on during that 10 months, and when they finally owned up to the fact that, yes, they did let guns walk, it's very narrow what we're looking for under contempt.
And Speaker Boehner was very good in this process of saying, let's make sure we only focus contempt on that which we absolutely need and have no chance of getting any other way. The documents we seek are by definition narrow, and there's nowhere else to get them.
TAPPER: Last question for you, Congressman. You seem to suggest Fast and Furious may be part of a deliberate attempt by the administration to make the case for stronger gun laws. Here you are speaking in April at an NRA convention.
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ISSA: They've never answered the question, what were they thinking of? Could it be that what they really were thinking of was, in fact, to use this -- this walking of guns in order to promote an assault weapons ban? Many think so, and they haven't come up with an explanation that would cause any of us not to agree.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TAPPER: You really think that there's a possibility that they were sending guns across the border not because they were trying to get people in the Mexican drug cartels, not because they were trying to figure out drug -- I mean, gun trafficking, but because they were trying to push gun control?
ISSA: Two things quickly. First of all, this was so flawed that you can't believe they expected to actually get criminal prosecutions as a result of it. So the level of flaw -- flaw -- flaw, if that's a word, here is huge.
But here's the real answer as to gun control. We have e-mails from people involved in this that are talking about using what they're finding here to support the -- basically assault weapons ban or greater reporting.
So chicken or egg? We don't know which came first; we probably never will. We do know that during this -- this Fast and Furious operation, there were e-mails in which they're saying we can use this as part of additional reporting or things like assault weapons ban. So the people involved saw the benefit of what -- what they were gathering. Whether or not that was their original purpose, we probably will never know.
And I -- and I take people at their word that this started off in some way as an idea where they could get good information, they could, in fact, roll up bad guys. But after it was out of control and people are saying, we're letting too many guns walk, those kinds of e-mails occurred, we -- we have people who also were being opportunists.