A couple of days ago, Attorney General William Barr (pictured) announced the appointment of a special counsel for the criminally fraudulent "Russia!" Hoax. The special counsel is none other than the current US Attorney investigating the case – John Durham. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
A couple of days ago, Attorney General William Barr announced the appointment of a special counsel for the criminally fraudulent "Russia!" Hoax. The special counsel is none other than the current US Attorney investigating the case – John Durham.
The appointment is troubling on three fronts: 1. Durham has produced only one indictment of a lowly Justice Department staff attorney; 2. Durham's appointment may not be legal; and, 3. Barr did not make the appointment (back on October 19) public until now because he was concerned it was too political during an election season. Of course, one can also argue that NOT making the announcement was too political. The inactivity is strikingly similar to the pharmaceutical companies waiting until about three days after the election to announce their 95% effective COVID vaccines. Seems President Trump must not be credited with anything that might be conveniently deferred to his opponent's advantage.
Barr wrote that "in light of extraordinary circumstances relating to these matters, the public interest warrants Mr. Durham continuing this investigation pursuant to the powers and independence afforded by the Special Counsel regulations."
I have discussed the anemic legal performance of Durham's team, and the mountain of publicly available information that can be crafted to indict approximately three dozen government officials. You are reminded that forty indictments arose from Watergate. The Russia! Hoax is exponentially more serious and criminally Byzantine than Watergate.
Durham may not be eligible to serve as a special counsel. Justice department rules say, "the special counsel shall be selected from outside the United States government." The sitting U.S. attorney for the District of Connecticut (Durham) does not appear to be eligible. One would think Barr's staff would have double-checked that requirement.
Barr cited 28 U.S. Code § 509, 510, and 515 as justification for his appointment of Durham.
"I decided the best thing to do would be to appoint them under the same regulation that covered Bob Muller, to provide Durham and his team some assurance that they'd be able to complete their work regardless of the outcome of the election," Barr told the Associated Press.
We shall see.
Durham's special counsel appointment gives him the authority to investigate whether any federal official, employee, or any other person or entity violated the law in connection with intelligence and law enforcement abuses leveraged against the Trump 2016 presidential campaign, people associated with the campaign, the Trump transition and the Trump presidential administration. It even lets Durham investigate the investigators – meaning: the Mueller investigation – that dragged on ad nauseum with nothing to show.
Should Biden finally, officially, be declared the next president, you can rest assured that he will dismiss Durham during the opening flurry of activity from his administration. Congressman Adam Schiff has already telegraphed the early dismissal:
"I think the next attorney general will have every opportunity to examine, to repeal, or to allow the investigation to continue if the next attorney general thinks there is anything, any part of it that has any merit."
Translation: Durham's special counsel stint is "dead-on-arrival."
Of course, this is all wildly frustrating for those of us hoping for some semblance of accountability and justice. Something. Anything.
When the Russia! Hoax fell apart it was reinvestigated by Mueller – and when that collapsed, they manufactured "Ukraine!" This bit of theater got the president impeached in two months flat. That was just last year. Do you remember? For many eager to bring down the current administration, prosecutions and justice move with lightning speed. Barr and Durham appear to still be looking for the keys to their offices. Meanwhile, Barr can't find any voter fraud "at this time," so the whole question becomes moot as Biden assumes the presidency.
This should all be deeply disturbing to the American public. Apparently, it is not. That, dear reader, is even more disturbing. The American public do not want to be deceived – yet again.
Chris Farrell is a former counterintelligence case officer. For the past 20 years, he has served as the Director of Investigations & Research for Judicial Watch. The views expressed are the author's alone, and not necessarily those of Judicial Watch.