U.S. Attorney John Durham’s investigation into the intelligence and law enforcement communities’ handling of the Russia probe is quietly but steadily expanding under the shadow of the high-profile House impeachment inquiry against President Trump—and could represent something of a wild card in the president’s attempts to fight back.
Attorney General Bill Barr appointed Durham, the U.S. attorney from Connecticut, to ensure intelligence collection activities by the U.S. government related to the Trump 2016 presidential campaign were “lawful and appropriate.”
His probe reportedly will soon focus on the roles of key Obama administration intelligence officials like John Brennan and James Clapper. And it converges with other simultaneous investigations, including Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s probe of alleged Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) abuses, which, coupled together, could give the president ammunition to attack his critics, even if the material does not directly relate to the Ukraine controversy fueling the impeachment push.
“If the rumors are true that IG Horowitz’s report and findings in Durham’s review will blast the conduct of the FBI’s Russia investigation, it will give Trump a lot of ammo to support his argument that he was unjustly targeted then and is being unjustly targeted now,” a House GOP source told Fox News on Tuesday. “It will justify Trump’s warnings about the Deep State acting to hobble his presidency.”
Trump claimed Tuesday that the impeachment push amounted to a “lynching” — which touched off a round of fiery condemnation from Democratic critics.
“The president should not compare a constitutionally mandated impeachment inquiry to such a dangerous and dark chapter in American history,” House Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., told reporters.
But as Trump and Democrats loudly clash over the probe, Durham has pressed forward quietly with an investigation that could ding the reputations of some of Trump’s biggest critics. – READ MORE