The Justice Department is circling its wagons around Donald Trump. The ex-President’s lawyers have been in talks with the DOJ as federal prosecutors’ investigation into the January 6 Capitol riot heats up. Centered on whether Trump’s communications with White House officials and first-hand witnesses are privileged conversations, the newly disclosed discussions are intensifying.
“In recent weeks, investigators have moved aggressively into Trump’s orbit, subpoenaing top former White House officials, focusing on efforts to overturn the 2020 election and executing searches of lawyers who sought to aid those efforts,” CNN reports.
Former White House counsel Pat Cipollone has already given testimony to the House Select Committee. Now, in what ABC News reported as a “dramatic escalation” in the Justice Department’s investigation, subpoenas have been issued for Cipollone and other senior White House officials — prompting federal prosecutors to prep for a legal battle over claims of executive and attorney-client privilege in its criminal probe.
Prior to the subpoenas, the DOJ had been under pressure from the public to do more, but in an exclusive interview with NBC’s Lester Holt, Attorney General Merrick Garland pushed back on criticism that his office wasn’t doing enough to hold Trump accountable, telling Holt that “We pursue justice without fear or favor.”
Garland didn’t rule out a Trump prosecution — even if the former President announces a 2024 run.
According to Raw Story, Trump is eyeing Mark Meadows to be the fall guy for his boss’ actions. In an interview on MSNBC‘s The ReidOut, former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner told host Joy Reid, that it can only happen if the Department of Justice “allows it to.”