At least one attempt by Donald Trump to use his Justice Department to go after political rivals has flopped as new reporting reveals that a review conducted by a Barr-appointed prosecutor found no wrongdoing.
According to the Washington Post, “The federal prosecutor appointed by Attorney General William P. Barr to review whether Obama-era officials improperly requested the identities of individuals whose names were redacted in intelligence documents has completed his work without finding any substantive wrongdoing, according to people familiar with the matter.”
The news will likely send Trump into (another) rage as he desperately searches for ways to turn the election back in his favor before Joe Biden fully runs away with it.
More from the report:
The revelation that U.S. Attorney John Bash, who left the department last week, had concluded his review without criminal charges or any public report will rankle President Trump at a moment when he is particularly upset at the Justice Department. The department has so far declined to release the results of Bash’s work, though people familiar with his findings say they would likely disappoint conservatives who have tried to paint the “unmasking” of names — a common practice in government to help understand classified documents — as a political conspiracy.
The president in recent days has pressed federal law enforcement to move against his political adversaries and complained that a different prosecutor tapped by Barr to investigate the FBI’s 2016 investigation of his campaign will not be issuing any public findings before the election.
Legal analysts feared Bash’s review was yet another attempt by Trump’s Justice Department to target political opponents of the president. Even if it ultimately produced no results of consequence, legal analysts said, it allowed Trump and other conservatives to say Obama-era officials were under scrutiny, as long as the case stayed active.
The fact that the assessment was concluded quietly and without any public report speaks volumes. Had anything of substance been uncovered, Trump would have spent the next three weeks shouting it from the rooftops.
Instead – as was the case with Hillary Clinton’s emails – the exercise was another fail for a president who is desperately trying to find dirt on his enemies.
Trump has openly urged Barr to go after political rivals
With Donald Trump becoming increasingly desperate as this election slips away from him, he has been openly pressing Attorney General Bill Barr to go after his political rivals.
Just last week, Trump even criticized Barr for not moving quickly enough to target his political enemies ahead of the November election.
If this latest report is any indication, Trump’s dreams of finding a smoking gun on his opponents – Barack Obama and Joe Biden, in particular – are unlikely to come true.
After all, if Bill Barr – arguably this president’s most loyal henchman – is struggling to find dirt on Donald Trump’s political rivals, chances are there isn’t any.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.