Washington Examiner

Jordan demands Garland give up Smith memo in Trump probe.

House GOP Investigator Demands Unredacted Memo from AG Garland

A top House GOP investigator demanded that Attorney General Merrick Garland hand over an unredacted version of the Justice Department’s scope memo into special counsel Jack Smith’s investigations into former President Donald Trump.

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, is continuing to investigate the FBI’s “unprecedented raid” of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort home in August. Jordan wants more information on what Smith has been up to since being appointed by Garland in November.

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Jordan previously requested information and documents related to the FBI’s raid on President Trump’s residence and its subsequent investigation. Because Garland has not provided this information to the committee, Jordan is now requesting an unredacted copy of the memorandum outlining the scope of Mr. Smith’s probes regarding President Trump and any supporting documentation related to his appointment as special counsel.

The GOP chairman asked for that information by June 20.

Garland’s appointment order for Smith said that the special counsel “is authorized to conduct the ongoing investigation into whether any person or entity violated the law in connection with efforts to interfere with the lawful transfer of power following the 2020 presidential election or the certification of the Electoral College vote held on or about January 6, 2021.” Smith was “further authorized to conduct the ongoing investigation” related to the FBI raid of Mar-a-Lago.

“The Special Counsel is authorized to prosecute federal crimes arising from the investigation of these matters,” the appointment memo said. “The Special Counsel is also authorized to refer to the appropriate United States Attorney discrete prosecutions that may arise from the Special Counsel’s investigation.”

Smith’s special counsel investigation into Trump and his alleged mishandling of classified documents at Mar-a-Lago is reportedly “wrapping up” as the Justice Department moves toward a possible indictment of the former president.

A decadeslong DOJ veteran prosecutor, Smith had most recently been a prosecutor at The Hague, where he investigated war crimes in Kosovo.

Smith served under Attorney General Eric Holder, leading the DOJ’s Public Integrity Unit from 2010 to 2015. Smith led a team of 30 prosecutors in mar-a-lago-investigation-moves-forward/” title=”The other grand jury: Jack Smith’s Mar-a-Lago investigation moves forward”>conducting public corruption cases throughout the United States, including a mixed track record of going after high-profile politicians. He also inserted the DOJ into what would become the Lois Lerner IRS scandal targeting conservative nonprofit groups during the Obama years, which Trump has criticized.

Jordan had also pressed Garland in a letter on Friday about special counsel John Durham’s findings related to the faulty origin of the Trump-Russia investigation and the “failings” of the FBI. The GOP chairman placed Smith’s investigation related to the Mar-a-Lago classified documents incident and the Capitol riot in the context of Durham’s report, arguing that “due to the FBI’s documented political bias, the Justice Department must ensure any ongoing investigations are not poisoned by this same politicization.”

Durham is slated to testify before the House Judiciary Committee on June 21. The special counsel will also speak behind closed doors with the House Intelligence Committee, led by Rep. Mike Turner (R-OH), the day prior.

Jordan argued to Garland that Durham’s report “details how the FBI abused its law-enforcement authorities to achieve a political end — that is, hamstring the campaign and presidency of President Trump” as he pushed Garland on the FBI’s involvement in Smith’s sprawling investigation into the former president.

The GOP chairman told Garland to provide his committee with information about Smith’s use of the FBI, including whether any FBI employees who have worked on Smith’s investigation have previously worked on other investigations tied to Trump. Jordan also told the attorney general to reveal the number of FBI employees assigned to the special counsel investigation, including the number of employees from FBI Headquarters and the Washington Field Office working on it.

Jordan also asked Garland to “explain whether Special Counsel Smith’s investigation relies on any information or material gathered exclusively by the FBI prior to the Special Counsel’s appointment.” He asked for all of these answers by June 15.

President Joe Biden is also being investigated by another Garland-appointed special counsel, Robert Hur. Biden’s personal attorneys said they first discovered classified documents in early November 2022 at the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement, located in the nation’s capital. Biden’s lawyers then found more classified documents at his Wilmington home in Delaware, and the Department of Justice found more when it conducted its own search.

Trump shared a May letter from his lawyers to Garland on Truth Social with the attorneys contending that “unlike President Biden, his son Hunter, and the Biden family, President Trump is being treated unfairly” as they asked for “a meeting at your earliest convenience to discuss the ongoing injustice that is being perpetrated by your Special Counsel.”

Hunter Biden’s lawyers met with DOJ officials representing the tax division and the U.S. attorney in Delaware in late April. Trump’s lawyers met at the DOJ with Smith and others on Monday.

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