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Barrow to buck Dem. leadership on Holder contempt vote

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When House lawmakers vote Thursday on GOP recommendations that U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder be held in contempt of Congress for stonewalling an investigation into a bungled gun-running operation, Georgia Democratic Rep. John Barrow will break partisan rank to censure the president’s choice for the nation’s top law enforcement post.

An unnamed Congressional aide to Barrow confirmed the decision on Wednesday to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s one-man D.C. bureau Daniel Malloy.

Barrow was one of two Georgia Democrats who expressed support last month for a Congressional subpoena of Holder as the House oversight committee investigated Fast and Furious, an ATF operation that was linked to the death of U.S. Border Agent Brian Terry.

UPDATE: Barrow’s office circulated a statement Wednesday midday confirming reports the congressman would vote to hold AG Holder in contempt. It reads in full:

“For me, this investigation has been about justice for Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry and his family. While Republicans and Democrats argue over the scope of the people’s right to know what happened, the Attorney General has decided to withhold relevant documents. The only way to get to the bottom of what happened is for the Department of Justice to turn over the remaining documents, so that we can work together to ensure this tragedy never happens again.”

- James Richardson

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