Investigation Into Top Trump Official For Election Meddling Requested By Senate Committee

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The Senate Judiciary Committee has asked for an investigation by the D.C. Bar into Jeffrey Clark, the former top official at the Justice Department who, while on the job, intensely worked to push Trump’s false claims about the integrity of last year’s presidential election. Clark’s efforts included a push for top officials at the department to claim to leaders in Georgia and elsewhere that federal agents had identified issues calling the integrity of the election outcome in multiple states into question — which was not true.

As summarized by a press release from the panel, the committee identified two rules which Clark may have broken, including one that “prohibits attorneys from assisting or counseling clients in criminal or fraudulent conduct” and another that “prohibits conduct that seriously interferes with the administration of justice.” The latter rule was cited by a non-governmental group that recently also asked for an investigation into Clark in connection to his attempts to help Trump with pushing his false claims of a fraudulent presidential election.

On the occasion of the new release of findings from the Senate Judiciary Committee, which has been investigating attempts to use the powers of the federal government to subvert the election outcome, chairman Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) pointedly commented as follows:

‘Today’s report shows the American people just how close we came to a constitutional crisis. Thanks to a number of upstanding Americans in the Department of Justice, Donald Trump was unable to bend the Department to his will. But it was not due to a lack of effort. Donald Trump would have shredded the Constitution to stay in power. We must never allow this unprecedented abuse of power to happen again.’

Besides their request for an investigation into Clark, the Senate Judiciary Committee has now also revealed “[new] details of then-Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Civil Division Jeffrey Clark’s misconduct, including his attempt to induce [then-acting Attorney General Jeffrey] Rosen into helping Trump’s election subversion scheme by telling Rosen he would decline Trump’s offer to install him in Rosen’s place if Rosen agreed to aid that scheme,” the panel explains. Rosen and then-acting deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue, who was another target of Clark’s attempts to bring top officials to his and the then-president’s side, have already been interviewed by the Senate Judiciary Committee as part of this months-long investigation.

Notably, the Senate Judiciary Committee also shared “[new] details of how, at Barr’s direction, DOJ deviated from decades-long practice meant to avoid inserting DOJ itself as an issue in the election—and instead aggressively pursued false claims of election fraud before votes were certified,” as a press release from the committee put it. The committee’s investigation into these matters is continuing, and that press release notes that it “continues to seek records requested from the National Archives and Records Administration, which have not yet been supplied, and continues to pursue interviews with relevant individuals as part of this ongoing investigation.”