Rep. Jim Jordan says Attorney General William P. Barr is under attack by Democrats for a simple reason: He plans to “to get to the bottom of everything” surrounding the FBI’s Russia investigation.
The Ohio Republican’s warning to his House Judiciary Committee peers this week fell on deaf ears as he spoke about holding Mr. Barr in contempt for refusing to comply with a subpoena for the unredacted Mueller report.
Mr. Jordan said before a party-line vote that going after Mr. Barr would send a dangerous message.
“I think it’s all about trying to destroy Bill Barr because Democrats are nervous he’s going to get to the bottom of everything,” Mr. Jordan said Wednesday. “On October 21, 2016, the FBI used one party’s opposition research as the basis to go to a secret court to get a warrant to spy on the other party’s campaign. That happened. Democratic National Committee, the Clinton campaign, paid Perkins Coie law firm, who hired Fusion GPS, who then hired a foreigner — Christopher Steele — who did what? Talk to Russians and put together this salacious, unverified document that became the basis to get a warrant to spy on the Trump campaign.”
“They did it, and when they went to the court they didn’t tell them important things like who paid for it,” he continued. “They didn’t tell them that Christopher Steele had already told the FBI and the Justice Department that he was, quote, ‘desperate’ to stop Trump.” And they didn’t tell the court that Christopher Steele had been fired by the FBI because he was out talking to the press. They did that.”
The Republican implored his colleagues not to view their committee roles through a partisan lens.
“Under our system of government, unelected Executive Branch officers and intelligence agency personnel are supposed to answer to the person elected by the people the President and not the other way around,” he said, Mediaite reported. “This is not a Democratic or a Republican issue; it is a matter of having a government responsible to the people and, again, not the other way around. In the partisan commotion surrounding the released Report, it would be well to remember that what can be done to a President can be done to any of us.”
Wednesday’s 24 to 16 vote along party lines was the second time in history an attorney general has been held in contempt of Congress.
Then-Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. was held contempt by a Republican-controlled Congress in 2012 for refusing to turn over documents.
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