(Bloomberg) – House spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi called for Trump-era officials to testify under oath of Justice Department efforts to clandestinely subpoena data from House Democrats and the news media.
Former Attorney General Bill Barr and Jeff Sessions, along with Rod Rosenstein, a former assistant attorney general, are required to answer questions about subpoenas issued to at least two Democrats affiliated with the House Intelligence Committee, Pelosi said.
These subpoenas, as well as others targeting reporters from major news organizations, have been described as an attempt to track down leaks through the inner circle of former President Donald Trump and Russia.
“The Justice Department was a villain under President Trump,” said Pelosi on Sunday in CNN’s State of the Union. “This is just another manifestation of your rogue activity.”
Pelosi said the Trump DOJ “goes beyond Richard Nixon. Richard Nixon had an enemy list. It’s about undermining the rule of law. “
House Intelligence Committee chairman Adam Schiff said Thursday that the Trump Department of Justice had secretly subpoenaed personal records of people associated with his panel. This also included material related to Schiff itself, according to a spokeswoman for the panel.
Pelosi said she wanted to know who was responsible for carrying out the secret subpoenas and whether or not they would continue to work in the Justice Department.
Read more: Justice Watchdog investigates subpoenas of Trump-era legislature data
Justice Department Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz said Friday that he is initiating a review of the department’s use of subpoenas.
“The Inspector General’s report is really important, but it does not replace what we need to do in Congress,” Pelosi said, suggesting that the House take an active role in further investigations. She said she did not know how many Democrats were targeted by the DOJ.
When asked if she would summon the former attorneys general if they weren’t testifying on Capitol Hill, Pelosi replied, “Well, let’s hope they respect the rule of law.”
© 2021 Bloomberg LP