At a Wednesday hearing of the House Judiciary Committee, members heard from John Durham, the infamous de facto ally to former President Donald Trump who spent years leading a special counsel investigation into the origins of the Russia investigation, which Donald and allies of his have falsely claimed to be some kind of attempted undercut to his campaign.
It’s familiar, of course. Trump responds to essentially any potential legal woe with claims that somebody, somewhere is out to get him, no matter what the facts of the situation actually show. And that extends to his recently unveiled criminal case alleging more than 30 counts of willfully retaining protected federal government documents.
“But House Republicans do not want to talk about any of that,” top Democrat Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) said, referencing that case. “They seem incapable of assigning any agency or responsibility to Donald Trump for problems that are Trump’s and Trump’s alone. Instead, Republicans have planned this hearing and constructed an entire false narrative around this work of Special Counsel Durham in an effort to distract from the former president’s legal troubles and mislead the American public.”
Nadler’s comments were an effective rebuttal of arguments propagated by figures like Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), the Judiciary Committee’s chairperson. Nadler then began discussing some of the glaring gaps in Durham’s work, which included a lengthy final report. In short, Durham proved absolutely no conspiracy to undercut Trump or his campaign. Durham brought two more limited cases to trial and lost both on all counts, with sweeping acquittals from the juries.
“The Durham report unequivocally concludes that the FBI not only had the evidence to open an investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, but actually had an affirmative obligation to investigate ties between the Russian government and the Trump campaign,” Nadler said. As the Congressman explained it, the reality — as upheld by the facts Durham uncovered and highlighted — is not that the Russia investigation’s origins somehow trace back to the Hillary Clinton campaign’s work in 2016.
“He cannot dispute a single conclusion in the Mueller report,” Nadler summarized. “He cannot prove a magnificent deep state conspiracy. And he cannot say that the FBI investigation into the Trump campaign’s many ties to Russia never should have happened. And again, I can see why this would be disappointing to some.”