Entertainment Schumer says Trump's DOJ showed the 'fingerprints of a dictatorship'
Biden DOJ backtracks on subpoena for USA TODAY readers' IP addresses
The Department of Justice will not seek information identifying the readers of a USA TODAY story from earlier this year, according to a Friday court filing, but only after the FBI captured the alleged criminal it was seeking through other means. Gannett, which publishes USA TODAY, filed a motion to quash the subpoena, initially issued in April, last week. It was resisting an effort by the FBI to obtain the IP addresses of people who read a story about a shooting of two FBI agents on Feb. 2. The subpoena sought only information on who read the story during a 30-minute time period later that night.
Majority Leader Chuck Schumer hammered former President 's Department of Justice for secretly seizing records from Democrats and journalists during his Sunday news conference.
'What has happened here are fingerprints of a dictatorship, not a democracy,' Schumer said.
Schumer said Assistant Attorney General for the National Security Division John Demers, who's planning to resign from the department, as well as former attorneys general Bill Barr and Jeff Sessions, should testify before Congress voluntarily or face a subpoena.
Merrick Garland's DOJ Wants to Substitute Itself for Donald Trump in Defamation Case
E. Jean Carroll wants to sue Trump for allegedly defaming her while he denied an allegation of sexual assault.The DOJ, which is currently led by Attorney General Merrick Garland, argued in a brief filed on Monday that the department should be allowed to act as defendant because Trump's comments were made while he was an employee of the federal government.
He asked his Senate Republican colleagues, who twice acquitted Trump on impeachment charges, to join him in the push.
'This was nothing less than a gross abuse of power, an assault on the separation of powers,' Schumer continued. 'I don't think we've ever had a record of this ever happening in the past.'
Both Barr and Sessions deny knowing about the orders.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that was 'beyond belief' when she appeared on CNN's State of the Union Sunday.
'The Justice Department has been rogue under President Trump in so many respects,' she said. 'How could it be that there could be an investigation of the members in the other branch of government and the press and the rest too, and the attorneys general did not know?'
Trump’s defender in rape defamation suit: Biden’s Justice Dept
The DOJ under Biden has argued it was justified for the federal government under Trump to take over defence in the case.The DOJ defence of Trump against writer E Jean Carroll, who accused him of defaming her in his public denial as president that he raped her in a department store dressing room more than 20 years ago, has drawn bitter criticism – including from then-presidential candidate Joe Biden.
'What the administration did, the Justice Department, the leadership of the former President, goes even beyond Richard Nixon,' Pelosi also said.
During his presidency, Trump wanted to sniff out government officials who were leaking to the press, as his White House was plagued by embarrassing media reports.
Last week the news broke that the Justice Department had secretly subpoenaed Apple for metadata from House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, who was then the top Democrat on the GOP-controlled committee, which was investigating Trump's ties to Russia.
Another top Democratic Intelligence committee member, Rep. Eric Swalwell, was also targeted.
Swalwell said he didn't 'buy it' that Sessions are Barr were kept in the dark.
'That's not the way the department works. I know from my experience on the Intelligence Committee that for special matters - whether it involves the members of Congress or senior members, you know, in the press - this would go to the attorney general's office,' Swalwell said.
Democrats Call for Barr, Sessions to Testify 'Under Oath' After Report Says Trump DOJ Seized Lawmakers' Data
"This is a gross abuse of power and an assault on the separation of powers," Senate leaders Chuck Schumer and Dick Durbin said in a joint statement.Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Dick Durban released a statement Friday calling for Barr and Sessions to appear before the committee for questioning.
The Justice Department also asked Apple for metadata belonging to then White House counsel Don McGahn and his wife.
McGahn recently testified behind closed doors to the House Judiciary Committee, backing up many of the claims found in Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report.
The DOJ also secretly went after communications belonging to eight journalists - one from CNN, three from The Washington Post and four from The New York Times.
CNN's Barbara Starr, the network's Pentagon reporter and the journalist targeted, spoke about it publicly Monday saying, 'To say I was dumbfounded would be such a vast understatement.'
The network's own attorney was under a gag order and so Starr only learned that the government was going after 30,000 of her emails from 2017 this May.
Trump directed DoJ to go after SNL for making fun of him, report says .
Donald Trump, when he occupied the White House, was so frustrated with the way Saturday Night Live mocked him he asked if the Justice Department could go after the NBC late night comedy show. A new report reveals, that in early 2019, the then-president asked his advisers for options after watching an SNL episode that made fun of him. Two people familiar with the matter told The Daily Beast that Trump asked advisers and lawyers about what the Federal Communications Commission, the courts systems, or the Department of Justice could do to investigate SNL, Jimmy Kimmel, and other late-night comedians.