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Two old New York Times stories are raising new questions about Biden's role in newest Trump indictment
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Two old New York Times stories are raising new questions about Biden's role in newest Trump indictment

Two year-old New York Times stories are receiving renewed attention because they appear to question the independence of the Justice Department under President Joe Biden.

President Joe Biden famously claimed in June that Americans should trust the independence of the DOJ because he is "honest."

"Because you notice I have never once — not one single time — suggested to the Justice Department what they should do or not do, relative to bringing a charge or not bringing a charge. I'm honest," Biden said.

But according to the New York Times, Biden vented behind closed doors frustrations that the DOJ was not aggressive enough in pursuing former President Donald Trump.

In March 2023, the Times reported:

In the past, Mr. Biden privately told his close circle of advisers that Mr. Trump posed a threat to democracy and should be prosecuted for his role in the events of Jan. 6, according to two people familiar with his comments. He also told confidants that he wanted Attorney General Merrick B. Garland to stop acting like a ponderous judge and to take decisive action.

The allegations first surfaced in so-called "paper of record" last April in a story about the DOJ's aggressive prosecution of individuals involved in Jan. 6. From the Times:

The attorney general’s deliberative approach has come to frustrate Democratic allies of the White House and, at times, President Biden himself. As recently as late last year, Mr. Biden confided to his inner circle that he believed former President Donald J. Trump was a threat to democracy and should be prosecuted, according to two people familiar with his comments.

And while the president has never communicated his frustrations directly to Mr. Garland, he has said privately that he wanted Mr. Garland to act less like a ponderous judge and more like a prosecutor who is willing to take decisive action over the events of Jan. 6.

Fast-forward about 16 months, and Trump is now facing criminal prosecution for alleged conspiracies and obstruction related to the 2020 presidential election and, in special counsel Jack Smith's eyes, Jan. 6. Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed Smith.

The Times, of course, absolved Biden of directly influencing Garland. But the reporting also left open the possibility that senior aides may have encouraged the DOJ to pursue Trump more aggressively in line with Biden's alleged wishes.

Or, at the very least, a game of telephone was played, and the message was eventually relayed to Garland.

According to Wall Street Journal columnist Kim Strassel, "This is how it works in Washington."

"Biden was never going to produce a memo and send it to the Department of Justice outlining his wishes. Nobody does that — they all want plausible deniability when it comes to sending orders to DOJ," she explained last Friday on Fox News.

"But instead, he tells a close circle of confidants, and then those confidants tell others, and that message gets to Merrick Garland," she said.

Kayleigh McEnany: This is an 'explosive allegation' against Bidenwww.youtube.com

(H/T: Kayleigh McEnany)

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