The Fast and Furious program was designed to track the weapons into Mexico in hope that they could track them as they filtered into higher echelons of the drug cartels. Under the program, the ATF allowed some known gun smuggling operations to continue, with the hope they would be linked to top criminals that had thus far avoided prosecution.
But the DOJ has since admitted that they lost track of many of the firearms, some of which have been linked to violent crimes, including the fatal shooting of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.
That's drawn wide-scale criticism from Republicans, and an investigation from House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.). The Obama administration has claimed executive privilege on many of the documents stemming from the case, prompting House Republicans to vote Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress. The White House has also stressed that so-called gun-walking programs began under the George W. Bush administration and said Obama was unaware of the operation.
On Tuesday, lawyers for the Justice Department told a federal judge they were in talks to settle a lawsuit with the House GOP stemming from the contempt charge, according to a report from Reuters.