During a heated exchange with Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) at a House Judiciary Committee meeting on Tuesday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions pushed back on the immediate need for a second special counsel to investigate Hillary Clinton.
It would take “a factual basis that meets the standard of a special counsel” for the Justice Department to make such an appointment, he said
“We will use the proper standards and that’s the only thing I can tell you, Mr. Jordan,” Sessions said. “You can have your idea but sometimes we have to study what the facts are and to evaluate whether it meets the standards it requires.”
The Hill reports:
Jordan made a fiery case for allegations of improper spying on the Trump campaign by the Obama administration Department of Justice that widely was touted amongst Capitol Hill Republicans.
“We know one fact. We know the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee paid for the dossier,” he said.
“And it sure looks like the FBI was paying the author of that document and it sure looks like a major political party was working with the federal government to then turn an opposition research document — the equivalent of some National Enquirer story — into an intelligence document to take that to the FISA Court so they could then get a warrant to spy on President Trump’s campaign,” Jordan said.
“That’s what it looks like and I’m asking you, in addition to all the things we know about James Comey in 2016, doesn’t that warrant naming a second special counsel?” he said.
Sessions at first demurred, noting that Comey is no longer the director of the FBI and praising the current director, Chris Wray. But pressed further by Jordan — “He’s not here today, Attorney General Sessions, and you are” — Sessions appeared to throw cold water on the immediate need for a special counsel.
“I would say ‘looks like’ is not enough basis to appoint a special counsel,” he said sharply.