(USA Features) The House Judiciary Committee is demanding that the Justice Department turn over documents and make scores of officials available as witnesses in a probe aimed at determining whether there was “political interference” in recent high-profile cases.
The committee, led by chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), wants to speak to more than a dozen DoJ witnesses, according to a letter sent to Attorney General William Barr on Friday.
Nadler (top, left) characterized a list of Justice Department actions as “deeply troubling,” which includes overruling federal prosecutors who sought a lengthy sentence for Roger Stone, a former associate of President Donald Trump.
Also, Nadler and the committee want to know if there was any political motivations behind decisions to open investigations into officials that were involved in the so-called “Spygate” probe, as well as interventions to relocate former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort out of Rikers Island jail in New York.
“The Judiciary Committee needs to examine a range of recent actions that smack of political interference,” Nadler wrote in his letter.
The Washington Times, citing a spokesman from DoJ, said it wasn’t clear the department would cooperate.
The committee’s ranking member, Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), slammed the request. He accused Nadler of trying to launch a high-profile investigation to distract from a failure to agree on changes to the FISA law, which the department’s inspector general found the FBI violated on numerous occasions during the Spygate probe.
“The Democrats’ request today is yet another attempt to distract from the job that they’ve failed to do, which is reform FISA and finally address the abuse that has plagued our nation over the last three years,” he said.
“The fact that Democrats sent these requests just two days after canceling our FISA markup and putting our national security at risk is further proof they care about one thing and one thing only: attempting to take down President Trump.”
Nadler is requesting documents ahead of Barr’s scheduled March 31 testimony.