AG Merrick Garland Appoints Special Counsel to Oversee Trump Investigations

Attorney General Merrick Garland announced on Friday that he is appointing a special counsel to oversee the federal criminal investigations into former President Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election and his handling of classified documents.

This action comes days after Republicans—who plan to investigate the grossly political Justice Department—won the House of Representatives, and over a week after Joe Biden told reporters that his administration will make sure Trump “will not take power if he does run.”

The attorney general said that because Trump has announced that he’s running for president, and Joe Biden has indicated he will most likely run again, “it is in the public interest to appoint a special counsel” to investigate Trump.

The attorney general said that he would be appointing veteran prosecutor Jack Smith for the role.

“Mr. Smith is the right choice to complete these matters in an even-handed and urgent manner,” Garland said. “Such an important appointment underscores the department’s commitment to both independence and accountability and particularly sensitive matters,” he added.

Garland said that Smith has throughout his career “built a reputation as an impartial and determined prosecutor, who leads teams with energy and focus to follow the facts wherever they lead.”

Most recently, Smith served as a chief prosecutor for the special court in The Hague, where he investigated war crimes in Kosovo, CNN reported.

Beginning in 2008, he worked for the International Criminal Court and oversaw war crimes investigations under the Office of the Prosecutor for two years. In 2010, he became chief of the Public Integrity Section of the Justice Department, where he oversaw litigation of public corruption cases before being appointed first assistant US attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee in 2015.

Smith took over as acting US Attorney when David Rivera departed in early 2017 before leaving the Justice Department later that year and becoming vice president of litigation for the Hospital Corporation of America. In 2018, he became chief prosecutor for the special court in The Hague, where he investigated war crimes in Kosovo.

“Mr. Smith is the right choice to complete these matters in an even-handed and urgent manner,” Garland declared.

“The pace of the investigations will not pause or flag under my watch,” Smith said in a statement following Garland’s announcement Friday. “I will exercise independent judgement and will move the investigations forward expeditiously and thoroughly to whatever outcome the facts and the law dictate.”

During his bizarre and gaffe-filled press conference on Nov. 9,  a reporter asked Biden about Trump’s upcoming plans to run for president again. Biden scoffed in response, and stated that his regime will “have to demonstrate” that Trump “will not take power if he does run.”

Biden added that they will be “making sure he [Trump] under the legitimate efforts of the Constitution does not become the next president again.”

Republicans, not surprisingly, had thoughts on the appointment of another special counsel to lead investigations against Trump.


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About Debra Heine

Debra Heine is a conservative Catholic mom of six and longtime political pundit. She has written for several conservative news websites over the years, including Breitbart and PJ Media.

Photo: WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 18: U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland delivers remarks at the U.S. Justice Department Building on November 18, 2022 in Washington, DC. Garland announced he will appoint a special counsel to oversee the Justice Department’s investigation into former President Donald Trump and his handling of classified documents and actions before the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol Building. Garland's pick to oversee the special counsel is Jack Smith, an international criminal court prosecutor. Garland spoke alongside Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco (L) and Assistant Attorney General Kenneth Polite (R). (Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)