What Is Bill Barr Up To With New Special Counsel To Investigate The Investigators? | Talking Points Memo

U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr has made John Durham, the U.S. attorney who has been leading the dubious investigation into the Russia probe, a special counsel — creating a potentially messy situation for the incoming Biden administration.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://talkingpointsmemo.com/?p=1347114
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Why on earth would the Biden administration feel compelled to continue something that lame duck AG Barr ordered, knowing that Barr had long been on a fishing expedition for 45? Is there something I’m missing here?


Sounds like a coup d’etat by proxy.


Because Biden’s AG will stop that investigation, and Republicans in both houses and all the talk radio and right wing news channels will shout “Biden is covering up! Biden is covering up! Never before in our history has a president ever been so brazen in diverting justice! If he has nothing to hide, he shouldn’t fear an investigation, blah blah.”


Expand the special counsel’s mandate to include the malfeasance in the NY office before the 2016 election.


Under the law that creates a Special Counsel, the A.G. can’t just fire him and shut down the investigation. This appointment is an attempt to make it much more difficult for the incoming administration to put an end to this wild goose chase.

They’ve made a mistake, however. Under the regs, a Special Counsel can’t be a government employee, which Durham certainly is. The appointment is a dead letter - a new A.G. can say, “This appointment was invalid, so we’re revoking it. We’ll let you know about the appointment of a replacement SC. It will happen RSN - real soon now.”


Looking at the news tonight, this is a small issue compared to what is happening between Barr and Trump’s “legal team”, also the DOJ and an investigation of the Whitehouse involvement in blatant pay for play. Hate to rely on clickbait.com, but…


Just re-define the scope of the investigation to look into Trump’s pee tape or whatever else they want to know about from the Trump years and turn them back loose.


“[T]his appointment is almost certain to test the political will, judgment, and authority of a new Attorney General whose first priority should be to restore the damaged independence of the Justice Department,” Randall Samborn [said.]

Yes, the point is to embarrass Biden and his AG. If they let the “investigation” continue, they will be giving the Republicans something to play with. Fire Durham and they will be harangued for “obstructing justice.”


Andrew Weissmann, in his autopsy of the Mueller Report, lays out all the problems with the Special Counsel statute and the ways in which the team was always holding back their investigation in fear of being fired, especially when it came to the matter of issuing a subpoena to Trump and looking into his financial records.

Biden’s Justice Department should fire Durham at the first available opportunity.


Yes, it will be the new AG’s decision to make. The appointment itself is improper.


But under a short leash.

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It’s a sop to Trump after Barr told AP that there’s no evidence of fraud in the election. Durham hasn’t found anything yet, and making him a “special counsel” isn’t going to change that.


“What Is Bill Barr Up To With New Special Counsel To Investigate The Investigators?”

“creating a potentially messy situation for the incoming Biden administration.”


Kidding aside, he’s either setting up Biden’s impeachment or trying to set Biden up for being criticized as interfering with DOJ so they will forever have their bothsiderism when anyone raises what Trump and Barr did.


I dunno, as I recall, and please correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t we learn a few months back that Durham’s top aid quit because of “pressure” on the Russia probe? Seemed as if even Durham thought his probe was just a show. So, Durham could just wrap his case with nothing found come late January. Meanwhile, “audience of one” is placated.


Firing Durham would be mistake for sure. Worries here assume he will perform an unprofessional partisan hack “investigation” replete with poorly substantiated leaks to the likes of Jordan and Nunes. But so far, it seems he’s been rather a disappointment along those lines as far as they’re concerned.


Or he’s just another partisan bad actor who will is happy to be SP just to dare Biden to incur the bad optics of having him tossed out on his ass. But who knows…Barr is a s corrupt as they come and anyone who would work with him and accept this kind of appointment from him at this time is just as corrupt…so they could be up to anything really. Hard to say when we don’t have the info they have at their disposal and which has been kept secret. The one thing that is for sure is that they’ve planned for him to do something to screw with Biden’s presidency, not just Biden, but his presidency.


Nora Dannehy, yes, because of improper pressure from Barr.


Durham? Not how I’d describe him.


Then provide an alternative and a justification for it. I’m well aware that the idiots in the MSM all babbled about him reportedly being an honest broker and straight dealer, etc. etc. I just don’t buy that anymore once one ads “who worked closely with Bill Barr when he was Trump’s AG” to the end of it.