TOP News

Politics: Jan. 6 committee moves to hold former DOJ official in contempt

DOJ issues warnings to states on voting laws and audits

  DOJ issues warnings to states on voting laws and audits The Department of Justice took aim Wednesday at post-election audits and a flurry of voting laws passed after the 2020 elections, warning states some of their actions may run afoul of the law.The two new guidances released by the department follow a commitment from Attorney General Merrick Garland in June to offer states a refresher on legal obligations as DOJ ramps up its enforcement of voting rights statutes.The guidance on post-electionThe two new guidances released by the department follow a commitment from Attorney General Merrick Garland in June to offer states a refresher on legal obligations as DOJ ramps up its enforcement of voting rights statutes.

The House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol attack plans to move forward Wednesday with criminal contempt proceedings against a former Justice Department official who declined to cooperate with a panel subpoena and answer committee questions.

On Wednesday evening the panel will take up a criminal contempt report recommending the full House of Representatives hold the former acting head of the DOJ's civil division, Jeffrey Clark, in contempt of Congress -- the same action taken against Trump adviser Steve Bannon several weeks ago.

  Jan. 6 committee moves to hold former DOJ official in contempt © Susan Walsh/POOL/AFP via Getty Images, FILE

A full House vote is needed to refer the matter to the Biden Justice Department for further action.

Republicans point to number of times Garland has politicized the Justice Department

  Republicans point to number of times Garland has politicized the Justice Department Attorney General Merrick Garland is under fire from Republican lawmakers for allegedly politicizing the Justice Department. © Provided by Washington Examiner Rep. Jim Jordan spoke to the Washington Examiner about the Garland school boards memo controversy, saying: “My gut tells me that the main focus was this was politics. And that's what the Justice Department has been under Garland.” He added: “Joe Biden criticizes the Georgia election law, a few months later they sue Georgia. Joe Biden criticizes the Texas pro-life law. Eight days later, they sure Texas.

MORE: DOJ officials rejected colleague's request to intervene in Georgia's election certification: Emails

Clark was reportedly in touch with Trump frequently after the 2020 election and was allegedly a major proponent of baseless election fraud claims inside the Trump administration.

In this Sept. 14, 2020, file photo, Jeffrey Clark, Assistant Attorney General for the Environment and Natural Resources Division, speaks during a news conference at the Justice Department in Washington, D.C. © Susan Walsh/POOL/AFP via Getty Images, FILE In this Sept. 14, 2020, file photo, Jeffrey Clark, Assistant Attorney General for the Environment and Natural Resources Division, speaks during a news conference at the Justice Department in Washington, D.C.

He circulated a draft letter inside the Justice Department to urge Georgia's governor and top Georgia officials to convene the state legislature to investigate voter fraud claims.

Bannon has been charged with two counts of contempt of Congress for failing to testify and turn over records to House investigators, and has pleaded not guilty. A trial has not yet been scheduled.

Former Trump officials' coming contempt highlights need for Protecting Our Democracy Act .
Notwithstanding current Congressional standoffs, there are reasons to hope for bipartisan support in the Senate.What's the link?

See also