Three Democratic senators on Wednesday demanded the Justice Department release documents related to Ukraine and potential investigations in the Biden family.
Sens. Kamala D. Harris of California, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island requested the documents through the Freedom of Information Act.
The three senators, who are all members of the Judiciary Committee, said the public records request was necessary because the administration has stonewalled previous demands for documents.
“Congress shouldn’t have to submit open records requests to conduct oversight, but that’s the kind of obstruction we’ve come to expect from this administration,” Mr. Whitehouse said in a statement.
The senators are seeking communications from Attorney General William P. Barr and other Justice Department officials that include roughly 75 words and phrases.
Among those phrases are “Giuliani,” the last name of the president’s personal attorney Rudolph W. Guiliani; “Bill Taylor,” the former acting U.S. ambassador to Ukraine; and “Fraud Guarantee,” the name of a company owned by associates of Mr. Giuliani who have been arrested on campaign violations.
The senators are also seeking documents between Mr. Barr and others in the Justice Department regarding China, Ukraine and any request to investigate political rivals or companies associated with former Vice President Joseph R. Biden’s son Hunter.
“Attorney General Barr acts more like Donald Trump’s personal political fixer than the independent head of federal law enforcement,” Mr. Blumenthal said in a statement. “Now Barr has been directly named as a possible accomplice in President Trump’s attempts to seek corrupt assistance from a foreign leader for personal political gain.”
Freedom of Information Act requests can take months or even years to complete, raising the question of when the senators could receive their documents, if at all.
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