Department of Justice Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz on Monday announced that the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) is initiating “an investigation into whether any former or current DOJ official engaged in an improper attempt to have DOJ seek to alter the outcome of the 2020 Presidential Election,” according to a release.
The Office of the Inspector General said they were making this statement, consistent with DOJ policy, “to reassure the public that an appropriate agency is investigating the allegations.”
The probe comes on the heels of reports last week from The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal that former President Donald Trump attempted to use his Justice Department to challenge the election results, an effort that included the possibility of Trump ousting then-acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen.
The Times said in a report published Friday that Jeffrey Clark, a lawyer for the DOJ, nearly convinced Trump earlier this month to remove Rosen and use the department to undo Georgia’s election results.
Clark — who appealed to the former President’s false claims of election fraud — met with Trump earlier in January and told Rosen following the meeting that the then-President was going to replace him with Clark. Clark would then move to keep Congress from certifying the election results in Biden’s favor, according to the paper.
Rosen demanded to hear the news straight from Trump, the Times said, and arranged a meeting on the evening of Jan. 3 — the same day that Trump’s call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, in which Trump pressured the state official to find enough votes for him to win Georgia, came to light.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer called for Horowitz to launch a probe on Saturday, writing in a tweet that it was “unconscionable a Trump Justice Department leader would conspire to subvert the people’s will.”