As the Donald Trump-Russia collusion narrative designed to smear and stymie the Trump presidency continues to unravel, some members of the previous administration have become even more outspoken and shrill in their condemnations of how things are being run than they already were.
The latest to do so publicly is former Obama administration Attorney General Eric Holder, who took to Twitter to express his grave concern over Trump’s demand that the Department of Justice look into whether former President Barack Obama’s FBI/DOJ investigated his 2016 campaign for “political purposes.”
However, Holder urged the DOJ to “simply say no” to what he viewed as a demand from Trump that was outside “DOJ norms.”
Trump had tweeted Sunday, “I hereby demand, and will do so officially tomorrow, that the Department of Justice look into whether or not the FBI/DOJ infiltrated or surveilled the Trump Campaign for Political Purposes – and if any such demands or requests were made by people within the Obama Administration!”
I hereby demand, and will do so officially tomorrow, that the Department of Justice look into whether or not the FBI/DOJ infiltrated or surveilled the Trump Campaign for Political Purposes – and if any such demands or requests were made by people within the Obama Administration!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 20, 2018
On Monday, Trump hosted a meeting at the White House with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray, according to The Hill. The meeting’s goal was to no doubt discuss the specifics of the order from the president.
Trump’s tweeted order on Sunday and subsequent White House meeting led to Holder’s Monday evening tweet.
“More DOJ norms being eroded. Trump-a SUBJECT of the investigation-wants access to material related to the inquiry,” the former attorney general tweeted.
More DOJ norms being eroded. Trump-a SUBJECT of the investigation-wants access to material related to the inquiry. His Congressional supporters want evidence connected to an ongoing investigation. Time for DOJ/FBI to simply say no-protect the institutions and time tested norms.
— Eric Holder (@EricHolder) May 21, 2018
“His Congressional supporters want evidence connected to an ongoing investigation. Time for DOJ/FBI to simply say no-protect the institutions and time tested norms,” Holder added.
Holder, who served as head of the DOJ from 2009-2015, has been an especially vocal critic of Trump since the 2016 campaign season, and has even intimated that he is considering mounting a presidential challenge against Trump in 2020.
This most recent criticism of Trump came on the heels of revelations via FBI leaks that the bureau had utilized at least one “informant” during the election season to “spy” on the Trump campaign and dig up dirt on alleged connections to and collusion with Russia.
Unfortunately for Holder and his urging of the DOJ to disobey an order from the president, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders announced following the Monday meeting that the DOJ had asked Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s office to “expand its current investigation to include any irregularities with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s or the Department of Justice’s tactics concerning the Trump Campaign.”
Furthermore, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly was set to arrange a meeting involving top law enforcement officials and top members of Congress to “review” certain “highly classified materials” related to the FBI’s investigation of the Trump campaign that have been sought by lawmakers, Sanders said.
The question that must be asked, given the shrill tweet by Holder and others in recent days and weeks, is that if the actions of the DOJ and FBI under Obama were entirely above board and beyond reproach, as has been insisted, why are they protesting any inquiry into those actions so much? Surely they have nothing to hide, right?
To paraphrase a line from Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” that seems particularly relevant at this point, the former attorney general doth protest too much, methinks.
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