Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) said Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that former President Donald Trump’s “personal efforts” in the state of Georgia during the final days of his presidency were a “ripe” area for more investigation.
Anchor Chuck Todd said, “Considering how much the idea that the Justice Department is biased gets weaponized in politics, particularly on the right, do you think we should move to a system that appoints our attorneys general more like how we deal with the FBI, the Federal Reserve, where it’s five-year terms, and you try to create some sort of more distance between the Justice Department and political leaders?”
Whitehouse said, “I think we’d have to watch out for unintended consequence there. I would say what we really need is to make sure that the senate is only confirming attorneys general who will be honest, who will stand up to the president when he tries to get them to cheat, and who will do the job and follow the law properly. Unfortunately, what Barr sold himself as to us and how he behaved were two very, very different things.”
Todd said, “At the end of the report, there’s some talk of criminal referrals. What would be criminal in this case?”
Whitehouse said, “I don’t want to get into criminal referrals. We’re still at the interim level. I would point to the geographic fact of just so much of what took place at the Department of Justice being focused on Georgia, sending letters to the Georgia legislature saying they could open up in special session and redo the election and send a separate slate. To the extent that interconnects with the DA’s investigations into Trump’s personal efforts to threaten officials in Georgia on the same question, I think, is a very ripe area for Georgia’s investigation, and we’ll see what the Department of Justice wants to do with it.”
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