DOJ look­ing into Clin­ton, Democrats

The Palm Beach Post - - MORE OF TODAY’S TOP NEWS - ©2017 The New York Times

WASHINGTON — Ten days af­ter Pres­i­dent Trump said that he was frus­trated with the Jus­tice Depart­ment for not in­ves­ti­gat­ing Hil­lary Clin­ton and other Democrats, the Jus­tice Depart­ment told Congress on Mon­day that se­nior pros­e­cu­tors were look­ing into whether a spe­cial coun­sel should be ap­pointed to in­ves­ti­gate them.

The pros­e­cu­tors will ex­am­ine re­ports of mis­con­duct at the Clin­ton Foun­da­tion and the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion’s 2010 de­ci­sion to al­low a Rus­sian nu­clear en­ergy agency to ac­quire much of the United States’ ura­nium, among other mat­ters, ac­cord­ing to a let­ter sent to the House Ju­di­ciary Com­mit­tee from a se­nior Jus­tice Depart­ment of­fi­cial on Mon­day.

“Th­ese se­nior pros­e­cu­tors will re­port di­rectly to the at­tor­ney gen­eral and the deputy at­tor­ney gen­eral, as ap­pro­pri­ate, and will make rec­om­men­da­tions as to whether any mat­ters not cur­rently un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion should be opened, whether any mat­ters cur­rently un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion re­quire fur­ther re­sources, or whether any mat­ters merit a spe­cial coun­sel,” said the se­nior of­fi­cial, Stephen E. Boyd, an as­sis­tant at­tor­ney gen­eral.

The de­ci­sion to ex­am­ine those mat­ters raises ques­tions about whether Mr. Trump is try­ing to use the Jus­tice Depart­ment to in­ves­ti­gate his po­lit­i­cal ri­vals and dis­tract from the spe­cial coun­sel’s in­ves­ti­ga­tion into his pres­i­den­tial cam­paign. It also comes at a ten­u­ous time for At­tor­ney Gen­eral Jeff Ses­sions, whom Mr. Trump has hinted to ad­vis­ers he may want to fire. Peo­ple close to the White House be­lieve Mr. Ses­sions can stop the pres­i­dent from fir­ing him by ap­point­ing a spe­cial coun­sel to in­ves­ti­gate the ura­nium deal. Be­fore leav­ing for a trip to Asia this month, Mr. Trump ex­pressed his frus­tra­tion with the Jus­tice Depart­ment.

“I’m re­ally not in­volved with the Jus­tice Depart­ment,” Mr. Trump told re­porters. “I’d like to let it run it­self.”

“But, hon­estly, they should be look­ing at the Democrats,” Mr. Trump said.

He added: “And a lot of peo­ple are dis­ap­pointed in the Jus­tice Depart­ment, in­clud­ing me.”

As the spe­cial coun­sel’s in­ves­ti­ga­tion into Mr. Trump and his as­so­ciates has in­ten­si­fied in re­cent weeks, Mr. Trump has asked al­lies and ad­vis­ers why the spe­cial coun­sel, Robert S. Mueller III, is not in­ves­ti­gat­ing the Ura­nium One case, ac­cord­ing to a per­son fa­mil­iar with the pres­i­dent’s dis­cus­sions on the mat­ter. The al­lies and ad­vis­ers have told Mr. Trump that Mr. Mueller’s purview is only to look into Rus­sian in­ter­fer­ence in the 2016 elec­tion, the per­son said.

At­tor­ney Gen­eral Jeff Ses­sions is fac­ing ten­u­ous times.

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