Attorney General William Barr has appointed John Durham as special counsel to continue his probe into the origins of the ‘Russiagate’ investigation against President Donald Trump, even into the potential Biden administration.
Barr named US Attorney Durham as special counsel in October, two weeks before election day. The appointment was revealed in a letter to the Senate and House Judiciary Committees dated Tuesday.
News: Here is a copy of the order from Barr appointing John Durham as special counsel of the investigation into the origins of the Russia probe pic.twitter.com/rUFbDO6Amj
As special counsel, Durham will be charged with investigating the “intelligence, counter-intelligence or law-enforcement” efforts that targeted the Trump campaign first in 2016 by the FBI and then from 2017 onwards by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
President Trump has described the FBI and Mueller as politically-motivated, and their investigations into his supposed links to Russia as a “witch hunt.” Mueller eventually cleared Trump of colluding with Russia, but the tables were turned in 2019 when Barr appointed Durham to investigate the ‘Russiagate’ investigators.
Trump’s supporters, many of them expecting to see former FBI Director James Comey and a host of Obama administration officials hit with a flurry of subpoenas for authorizing agents to surveil the Trump campaign, have thus far been left disappointed by Durham’s probe. The coronavirus pandemic then put any potential final report by Durham on hold indefinitely.
However, as special counsel, Durham’s work will continue unabated, regardless of whether Trump loses his legal battle against last month’s election result and Biden takes office in January. Under US law, a special counsel can only be fired by the attorney general, and even so, only in the event of misconduct, dereliction of duty, or a conflict of interest.
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