24.06.2024

House Judiciary Committee opens probe into Georgia prosecutor Fani Willis hours before Trump surrender

The House Judiciary Committee on Thursday signalled that it was still largely consumed with doing the bidding of Donald Trump and using whatever political power it has to undercut the legitimacy of law enforcement agencies seeking to prosecute Mr Trump’s alleged criminal activities.

Coming on the heels of similar efforts by the Republican-led panel to demand information from Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg and Department of Justice Special Counsel Jack Smith, the committee on Thursday sent a letter to Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis accusing her of running a political hit job.

The letter, signed by chairman Jim Jordan, amounted to a laundry list of complaints that largely amounted to a disagreement with the legitimacy of RICO charges; it described various supposedly mundane actions taken by the president and his staff and accused the district attorney’s office of essentially creating crimes out of thin air.

In addition, the lawmakers highlighted the common practice of Ms Willis highlighting her office’s work in her campaign materials, claiming that doing so “raise(s) serious concerns about whether the prosecutions are politically motivated”.

Mr Jordan’s complaints about the supposedly legal actions being charged as crimes by Ms Willis’s office is a deliberate obscuring of the point of RICO charges, the most serious felony charge which Mr Trump and his cohorts are accused of committing. RICO charges can encompass a wide range of otherwise legal activities provided that they are alleged to have been committed in the service of a criminal conspiracy, which is exactly the case in Mr Trump’s Georgia prosecution.

The DA’s office argues that, given the facts and rulings by numerous courts, state and federal agencies, Mr Trump’s bid to alter the Georgia election results was an overarching criminal conspiracy. Any action taken to support that effort, then, becomes a crime chargeable under RICO (presuming that argument holds up in front of a judge and jury).

Mr Jordan’s efforts are far from surprising, as the Judiciary panel has been working on little else but running interference for the former president since Republicans took control of the House in January.

The ex-president is expected to surrender in Fulton County on Thursday; a number of his charged co-defendants including his ex-attorneys Rudy Giuliani, Jenna Ellis and John Eastman have already done so.

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