U.S. Attorney John Durham and his team of investigators have been working since last year to dig into the origins of the Obama administration’s probe of alleged ties between Russia and Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.
With a report expected in the near future, however, some Democrats — including U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) — are calling for a review of Durham’s work by U.S. Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz, as reported by the Daily Caller.
“Protect criminal investigations”
Harris, who is currently campaigning as Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s running mate, added her name to the request sent earlier this week to the IG’s office. The request was signed by all 10 Democratic members of the Senate judiciary committee.
The letter implored Horowitz to “investigate whether U.S. Attorney John Durham’s investigation complies with Department of Justice policies, including policies that protect criminal investigations from political influence.”
News of the request comes in the wake of reports that a top Durham aide, Nora Dannehy, resigned from the investigation.
While she did not address the matter publicly, unnamed sources indicated that she stepped down out of concern that Durham and the team were being used by Attorney General William Barr for political purposes.
That development, along with a few other anecdotes, were used in the Democrats’ letter to support their call for what would amount to an investigation into the investigation of an investigation.
“Insulated from political influence”
“These actions suggest that the Durham investigation is being misused for partisan political purposes and undermine the legitimacy of any investigative steps Mr. Durham takes,” the senators wrote.
Specifically, the letter’s signers stated that they want to ensure the Justice Department’s “prosecutorial decisions be insulated from political influence.”
Of course, as the Daily Caller pointed out, it was Horowitz who issued a report that found “17 ‘significant’ errors and omissions in applications for surveillance warrants on Trump aide Carter Page” as part of the initial Trump-Russia probe, dubbed Crossfire Hurricane.
As for Barr, he has weighed in occasionally regarding the progress of Durham’s investigation. The probe has already led to one criminal charge being filed against a former FBI attorney and the attorney general said earlier this month that there “could be” additional charges stemming from the probe.
Democrats in Congress are determined to portray Republicans as motivated only by politics in this process — even as their own partisan agendas shine through.