It initially appeared that President Donald Trump might have been able to count on The Department of Justice under Attorney General William Barr to help him contest the election, but a Washington Post report on Saturday has indicated that the DoJ has no interest in pursuing Rudy Giuliani’s allegations of voter fraud.
Devlin Barrett and Matt Zapotosky spoke with inside sources at the Justice Department, who said that the agency is willing to investigate “legitimate” claims of voter fraud. Bill Barr has even loosened some restrictions to allow for investigations that would not have been warranted otherwise. However, even Barr’s power has its limits.
As these investigations continue to find no evidence, and as the Trump team’s challenges in court continue to fail, Trump’s allies are being left with fewer legitimate options to maintain his presidency.
“Current and former officials said they thought Giuliani’s accusations sounded ‘crazy,’ and they have not seen or heard of any evidence suggesting large-scale fraud, let alone the kind of intercontinental conspiracy described by the president’s lawyer,” The Washington Post report said.
“Current and former [Justice Department] officials said they thought Giuliani’s accusations sounded ‘crazy,’ and they have not seen or heard of any evidence suggesting large-scale fraud”
— Ryan Goodman (@rgoodlaw) November 21, 2020
The sources spoke to the post under the condition of anonymity due to fears of retaliation.
At this point, Federal law enforcement officials are trying their best to avoid getting dragged into any investigations that “lack any reasonable basis of suspicion.”
Justice Department sources have reportedly said that the affidavits cited by Giuliani and other Republicans contain accusations, but no evidence to back them up.
Last week, Attorney General William Barr was criticized for involving the DoJ in the election investigations.
Barr’s involvement has sparked criticism because it is typically frowned upon for the DOJ to involve themselves with elections investigations at this point in the process. However, Barr took issue with these rules, saying that the “practice has never been a hard and fast rule.”
ICYMI: Attorney General William Barr authorized prosecutors to ‘pursue substantial allegations’ of irregularities of voting, even as President Trump pushed ahead with legal challenges to the results of #Election2020 https://t.co/Xl0Tpcz43G pic.twitter.com/c7vbDdlPfS
— Reuters (@Reuters) November 16, 2020
After a week of court proceedings and investigations, the Justice Department may be at a dead end. Meanwhile, Trump continues to lose his legal challenges in key battleground states.
On Saturday, U.S. District Court Judge Matthew Brann dismissed a lawsuit filed by President Donald Trump’s campaign in Pennsylvania, saying that it contained “strained legal arguments without merit.”
Brann turned down the request for an injunction, which is another major loss for the Trump campaign in its efforts to contest the election.
In a 37-page ruling, Brann said the Trump campaign asked him to “disenfranchise almost seven million voters” and said he could not find any case in which a plaintiff “has sought such a drastic remedy in the contest of an election,” according to NBC News.
William Barr became attorney general for the second time in 2019. During his ongoing term, he has dealt with numerous scandals relating to his cases and decisions, including his summary and selective redaction of the Mueller report, interventions in the guilty convictions and sentences of former advisors to President Trump, Roger Stone, and Michael Flynn, and allegations of political interference in the removal of Geoffrey Berman from his Southern District of New York attorney position.