Reprinted with permission from ShareBlue. Having completely abandoned any semblance of an investigation focused on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, as well as possible collusion with the Trump campaign, House Republicans are now trying to discredit the FBI and federal prosecutors. In the latest unprecedented development, the FBI has been forced to hand over sensitive documents to […]
At the urging of Republicans in Congress, the Trump Justice Department has reopened a blatantly political investigation of the Clinton Foundation. According to The Hill newspaper, Trump administration officials say that the investigation resumed “months ago,” and that prosecutors are again examining “pay to play” allegations that foundation donors received special treatment while Hillary Clinton […]
While most such groups had collapsed after 9/11, the law center noticed an explosion of so-called Patriot groups that began in 2009, the first year of Obama’s presidency, and reached a peak in 2012, when the group counted 1,360 active Patriot groups and 1,007 hate groups, including the Ku Klux Klan, skinheads and neo-Nazis.
According to our database, during this same period, from 2008 to 2013, terror plots and actions by far-right groups outnumbered Islamist domestic terror cases by more than 2 to 1. Far-right extremists also inflicted three times as many deaths as Islamists during this period.
With its echoes of Richard Nixon’s infamous “Saturday Night Massacre” during Watergate, to fire Robert Mueller sounds like an insane, almost suicidal proposition. And yet when asked by George Stephanopoulos on ABC News’ This Week whether the president would promise not to interfere with the special counsel probe, his lawyer Jay Sekulow offered no such guarantee — feeding speculation about what Trump might do.
The Justice Department, in the face of rising pressure from Capitol Hill, named former FBI chief Robert Mueller on Wednesday as special counsel to investigate alleged Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election and possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Moscow.
The Trump rationale for firing Comey — as stated by Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein — is obviously false for several reasons, even aside from the fact that Trump had welcomed Comey’s behavior toward Clinton in 2016 and literally embraced the FBI director in the Oval Office last January.
Senators Elizabeth Warren, Jeff Merkley, and Richard Blumenthal referred to a ProPublica story, which cited a source saying that Preet Bharara was overseeing an investigation of HHS Secretary Tom Price’s trading in health stocks. They asked whether Attorney General Sessions, President Trump or other officials in the Justice Department or White House were aware of such a probe before they removed Bharara, the top federal prosecutor in Manhattan.
White-collar crooks no doubt saluted Trump’s abrupt firing of Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara — “sheriff of Wall Street” — with popping champagne corks, just as Danziger imagines. But Bharara can tweet, too.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a brief Thursday press conference that he will recuse himself from “any investigation” that involves last year’s presidential campaigns, including the probe of Trump connections with Russia.
Last year, when he was still a Senator, Jeff Sessions met with the Russian ambassador — twice. But he failed to mention those meetings when questioned about Russia during his confirmation hearing.
Top White House officials have been reviewing Flynn’s contacts with the Russians and whether he discussed the possibility of lifting U.S. sanctions on Russia once Trump took office. That would potentially be in violation of a law banning private citizens from engaging in foreign policy, known as the Logan Act.
“He’s not out of the woods,” said a U.S. official who is familiar with the transcripts of intercepted communications between Flynn and the Russian ambassador to the United States, Sergey Kislyak, in late December. This official said Flynn “did discuss sanctions.”
If you measure President Donald Trump’s conflicts of interest by the amount of money at stake, or the variety of dicey interactions with government regulators, one dwarfs any other: his relationship with Deutsche Bank. The bank hoped to eliminate the president’s personal guarantee on loans. But such a move would not eliminate the conflict of interest, since the president’s company, which Trump still owns, would remain on the hook to pay back the loans.
The U.S. Justice Department will face off with opponents in a federal appeals court on Tuesday over the fate of President Donald Trump’s temporary travel ban on people from seven Muslim-majority countries, his most controversial act since taking office last month.
Sally Yates said late on Monday that the Justice Department would not defend the order against court challenges because she did not believe it would be “consistent with this institution’s solemn obligation to always seek justice and stand for what is right.” Hours later she was fired.
The Justice Department said the president has special hiring authority that exempts White House positions from laws barring the president from naming a relative to lead a federal agency. However, if Trump chooses to officially hire Kushner and also give him security clearance, then conflict-of-interest laws would apply.
The law is the law, but Trump and his far-right cohorts want to change the law to render protections for vulnerable communities worthless. Trump and Sessions are part of a right-wing wave dedicated to rolling back civil rights protections. The idea of what can happen without the protections of the Voting Rights Act and the Civil Rights Act does not keep them up at night.
Trump insisted he wants to lock up Clinton, but he now is considering whether to appoint Petraeus to one of the most sensitive jobs in government.
Personnel from the U.S. Justice Department’s civil rights division will be deployed to polling sites in 28 states to monitor the election.
Leaking investigative material is always a violation of rules that protect the rights of all citizens. Violating those rules to achieve a partisan objective before the election is an assault on democracy.
Media figures from across the political spectrum are criticizing FBI Director James Comey for defying Justice Department rules and precedent.
A White House plan aims to convene teachers and mental health professionals to intervene and help prevent Americans from turning to violent ideologies. The 18-page plan marks the first time in five years that the Obama administration has updated its policy for preventing the spread of violent groups.
The Department of Homeland Security said Monday that, taking a cue from the Department of Justice, it will review its widespread practice of incarcerating immigrants and refugees in for-profit detention centers. As private prisons fall out of favor, human rights groups call for feds to toss out harsh immigrant policies driving incarceration.
The Justice Department announced plans to cease using private prisons Thursday, a week after a highly critical report was released by the DOJ inspector general about the oversight and safety of private facilities.
One of the more egregious instances of bad conduct from the report is that a template for writing up trespass arrest reports contained the boilerplate language “A BLACK MALE” for a description of the arrestee, indicating an assumption that those arrested will be black.