During an appearance on CBS’s Face The Nation, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) called for a more wide-reaching investigation into Trump era abuses of power at the Justice Department than the one that was recently launched by Inspector General Michael Horowitz.
Schiff — alongside Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) — was targeted by the Trump Justice Department, which subpoenaed and obtained communications data for both members of Congress along with staffers and family members of the two. Horowitz, who oversees the Justice Department, has begun an investigation into the matter — and into the Trump Justice Department’s efforts to obtain communications data for certain journalists from prominent outlets — but Schiff observed while on CBS that there could be more to uncover. Schiff, who currently chairs the House Intelligence Committee, said that he’s already spoken with Attorney General Merrick Garland about a possibly more expansive investigation.
Discussing the obtaining of his data, Schiff commented as follows:
‘The inspector general is doing an investigation. I talked with the Attorney General about going beyond that. I think he really needs to do a wholesale review of all of the politicization of the department over the last four years. What happened to our committee, what happened to members of the press — that’s just a subset. The direct intervention by the president and the Attorney General in specific criminal cases implicating the president, like that of Roger Stone… Mike Flynn… these are gross abuses of the independence of the Justice Department, and we don’t know how far they run, and our new Attorney General has to find out.’
Watch Schiff’s remarks below:
AG Merrick Garland “really needs to do a wholesale review of all of the politicization of the [DOJ] of the last four years,” Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) says. “What happened to our committee, members of the press – that’s just a subset.” pic.twitter.com/PhC44XVovH
— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) June 20, 2021
Senate Democrats on the Judiciary Committee have already launched their own investigation into the matter, requesting a slew of documents from the Justice Department related to the obtaining of communications data of members of Congress. The Trump Justice Department went after the data in the context of an investigation into leaks of government information, but no evidence has apparently ever emerged tying Schiff or Swalwell to the leaks. While in office, ex-President Trump nevertheless characterized Schiff as a source for leaks — suggesting that political pressure from the then-president could have influenced the course of a Justice Department investigation, which would obviously be way out of line.