02.13.20

Senate Judiciary Democrats to Chairman Graham: Investigate Political Interference at DOJ

WASHINGTON (THURSDAY, Feb. 13, 2010) -- All 10 Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee wrote Chairman Graham asking that the committee immediately initiate an investigation into political interference at the Justice Department, to include this week’s reduction in the sentencing recommendation for Roger Stone.

            “The Justice Department’s mission ‘to ensure fair and impartial justice for all Americans’ requires that its prosecutorial decisions remain free from political influence. It’s becoming clear that this is not happening,” the senators wrote. “That’s why the Judiciary Committee should investigate involvement of political appointees in this and other cases and hear directly from Attorney General Barr.”

            Full text of the letter follows:

February 13, 2020

 

The Honorable Lindsey O. Graham

Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary

United States Senate

Washington, DC 20510

 

Dear Mr. Chairman:

            This is to request that the Judiciary Committee investigate the involvement of senior Justice Department political appointees in cases of personal or political interest to the President, including the sentencing recommendation of Roger Stone.

            On Monday, career prosecutors recommended a sentence of seven to nine years for Roger Stone, who was convicted of obstructing Congress, witness tampering, and other crimes. The next day, President Trump criticized the sentencing recommendation in a series of tweets, and the Justice Department filed a new memorandum seeking a more lenient sentence.

            The decision to overrule career prosecutors to favor one of the President’s associates is shocking and unprecedented. And it should surprise no one that all four prosecutors working on the case withdrew from further involvement. One career prosecutor even resigned from the Justice Department altogether. This is a red flag, as is recent reporting that Attorney General Barr has personally assumed control of all cases of personal or political interest to President Trump.

            The Justice Department’s mission “to ensure fair and impartial justice for all Americans” requires that its prosecutorial decisions remain free from political influence. It’s becoming clear that this is not happening. That’s why the Judiciary Committee should investigate involvement of political appointees in this and other cases and hear directly from Attorney General Barr.

            We appreciate your consideration of this request. 

Sincerely,

Dianne Feinstein

Ranking Member

 

Patrick Leahy

United States Senator

 

Richard J. Durbin

United States Senator

 

Sheldon Whitehouse

United States Senator

 

Amy Klobuchar

United States Senator

 

Christopher A. Coons

United States Senator

 

Richard Blumenthal

United States Senator

 

Mazie K. Hirono

United States Senator

 

Cory A. Booker

United States Senator

 

Kamala D. Harris

United States Senator

 

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