Democrats already plan to fight the appointment of U.S. Attorney John Durham to serve as special counsel and continue his investigation into the origins of the Russiagate hoax.
Attorney General William Barr announced Durham’s appointment last week, and although Senate Republicans called on Democrats to respect the process, several Democrats have insisted there is “no basis” for Durham’s appointment or for his investigation into the phony Crossfire Hurricane investigation.
“I think that is something that Barr was pursuing that has no basis. There’s no factual reason for that. And so why should the resources of the next attorney general go to something like that?” Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, said, according to The Hill.
Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., went a step further.
“The new attorney general should unwind all the bat-shit crazy moves that Trump has made, this included,” he said of the Durham appointment. “This shouldn’t survive one day into the Biden administration.”
A special counsel can only be fired by the attorney general for a stated reason, such as misconduct, dereliction of duty, incapacity, conflict of interest, or violating department policies.
This means Biden’s attorney general could potentially fire Durham, which is why several Democrats have said Durham’s appointment will be a likely topic of debate during the confirmation hearings for Biden’s attorney general.
“It’s an appropriate area of questioning, but we should also avoid political interference in the questions of whether to investigate or end an investigation,” Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., said. “There have been multiple investigations of exactly the same topic that Durham [is investigating] and none of them has found anything … There’s a real question whether there’s any merit whatsoever here to an investigation that seems more like a distraction.”
Now that he is a special counsel, Durham has the power to review former special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into President Trump’s campaign, as well as the FBI’s early probe into the Trump campaign, even if Trump leaves office.