DOJ inspector general to review Trump-era subpoenas of lawmakers, journalists

Sessions and Barr could be subjected to subpoenas if they refuse the senators' request.

Published: June 11, 2021 12:07pm

Updated: June 11, 2021 4:33pm

Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz said the agency's internal watchdog would investigate the seizure of data of Democratic House lawmakers and journalists during leak investigations.

Horowitz said in a statement Friday the investigation "will examine the Department’s compliance with applicable DOJ policies and procedures, and whether any such uses, or the investigations, were based upon improper considerations," according to The Washington Post.

The announcement follows Senate Democratic leaders Friday demanding Trump administration Attorneys General  Bill Barr and Jeff Sessions testify about the seizures of data from House Democrats in 2017 and 2018 – following the release of a news report on efforts by then-President Trump to learn who was leaking information related to the Russian collusion probe.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Dick Durbin said Barr and Sessions must testify before the chamber's Judiciary Committee, according to the Associated Press.

The former top U.S. law enforcement officers could be subjected to a subpoena if they refuse.

Durbin, of Illinois, is the Senate majority whip, the second-highest-ranking position among the Senate Democrats.

The news report was from the New York Times and was published late Thursday. The report states the Trump administration under Sessions, then Barr sought data from Apple and other internet providers on communications from at least 12 people, including two Democrats on the House Intelligence committee – California Reps Eric Swalwell and Adam Schiff, who was the panel's ranking member and is now its chairman. 

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