As the Republican-led House voted to hold Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. in contempt on Thursday, Democrats led by the Congressional Black Caucus walked out in protest. Democrats walked off the House floor and out of the chamber chanting, “shame on you” directed at their colleagues. The motion passed 255-67.
“This is not about oversight, this is about overkill,” Rep. James E. Clyburn (D-S.C.) said. “There is something evil about using the processes of the House to further political aims.”
Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco), the minority leader, said that “what is happening on the floor of the House is a misuse of power” and a distraction from her preferred focus of “jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs.”
Previously Pelosi declared that House Republicans are charging Holder with contempt of Congress in order to weaken his ability to prevent voter suppression. Aura Bogado, Colorlines.com’s voting rights blogger covered this story earlier this week in a post titled “Eric Holder’s New Role as Right Wing Boogeyman.”
Rep. Karen Bass (D-Calif.) said she was proud of participating in the walk out.
Reverend Al Sharpton also shared his take on the events Thursday on MSNBC. He called the moves by Congress a “politically motivated witch hunt.”
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) encouraged members of her caucus to “walk out.”
“I’m very moved by the members of the Congressional Black Caucus who say they are going to walk out on this,” Pelosi said on the House floor Thursday afternoon. “Walk out on this. Perhaps that’s the best way.”