House Speaker John Boehner said U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder must turn over more documents in the Fast and Furious probe or else the House will hold him in contempt of Congress.
Boehner has scheduled a floor vote for next week.
However, White House spokesman Jay Carney dismissed the move Thursday, calling it a "political fishing expedition" against Holder.
"He has demonstrated his willingness to try to reach a resolution to this matter with congressional investigators," Carney said of Holder. "To this point, the interest of House Republicans has been to use this politically."
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi also defended the attorney general, saying the vote is an attempt to distract him.
"To frivolously use that really important vehicle to undermine the person who's assigned to stop voter suppression in our country, I'm telling you that's how that's connected," Pelosi said.
Lawmakers are asking for documents that show how the Justice Department handled its investigation of the botched 2010 gun-tracking operation in which U.S.-purchased guns ended up in Mexico.
The White House has invoked executive privilege to keep the documents from being released.
But Boehner said executive privilege is designed to protect documents prepared for the president - not Justice Department records.