Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee, including vice-presidential candidate Kamala Harris, are calling for an investigation into the U.S. Attorney John Durham’s probe of the origins of the Russian collusion investigation. The Democrats believe the Durham investigation violates Justice Department policies regarding political influences in investigations.
“We write to request that you investigate whether U.S. Attorney John Durham’s investigation complies with Department of Justice policies, including policies that protect criminal investigations from political influence,” a group of 10 Democratic senators wrote to Inspector General Michael Horowitz on Thursday.
Since Durham is about ready to release his report, one can only question the timing of the Democrat’s request — especially since Durham has an impeccable government pedigree and a reputation for being tough and honest.
But Democrats are claiming that the White House is using the investigation for partisan political purposes.
The Democrats say that statements from Attorney General William Barr and White House officials show that the Durham probe is “being misused for partisan political purposes and undermines the legitimacy of any investigative steps” the prosecutor has taken.
Why would what anything Trump or Barr says that smacks of partisanship affect in any way what Durham is finding? In case the Democrats have forgotten, there’s a presidential campaign underway, and the guy in the White House is one of the candidates.
Obviously, the Democrats are trying to muddy the waters in advance of the release of Durham’s findings. Just what those findings might be has Democrats running scared.
Barr has provided some insight into areas that Durham is investigating. He has said that Durham is investigating whether the Russian government fed disinformation into the Steele dossier, as well as whether the FBI has been forthcoming about its activities before formally opening Crossfire Hurricane.
Biden and his boss Barack Obama are not targets of the investigation. But Durham appears to be focused on the FBI’s activities. There’s already been one guilty plea from a former FBI lawyer for altering an email about Carter Page.
Democrats are questioning whether Durham can even release a report before the election.
“We therefore request that your office investigate whether the Durham investigation has operated consistent with Department rules governing the appointment of U.S. Attorneys and the Department’s rules on public statements concerning pending investigations, taking action that may impact an upcoming election, and White House-Department communications concerning pending criminal investigations.”
Compared to the Mueller investigation, the Durham investigation is operating under a cone of silence. Mueller’s pipeline to the media allowed for the most sensational headlines — but little evidence to back them up.
There’s no comparison between the two. But it makes you wonder, where was the Democrats’ concern about political interference in a Justice Department investigation when Democrats were assisting Robert Mueller with his Russian collusion investigation?