The New York Times reports that the administrative review of the Department of Justice investigation of the Trump campaign has shifted from an administrative review to a criminal investigation.

The Times makes sure, in the sub-headline. to try to taint the criminal investigation as leaving Attorney General William Barr “open … to accusations that he is trying to deliver a political victory for President Trump.”

From The Times report:

For more than two years, President Trump has repeatedly attacked the Russia investigation, portraying it as a hoax and illegal even months after the special counsel closed it. Now, Mr. Trump’s own Justice Department has opened a criminal investigation into how it all began.

Justice Department officials have shifted an administrative review of the Russia investigation closely overseen by Attorney General William P. Barr to a criminal inquiry, according to two people familiar with the matter. The move gives the prosecutor running it, John H. Durham, the power to subpoena for witness testimony and documents, to impanel a grand jury and to file criminal charges.

The opening of a criminal investigation is likely to raise alarms that Mr. Trump is using the Justice Department to go after his perceived enemies. Mr. Trump fired James B. Comey, the F.B.I. director under whose watch agents opened the Russia inquiry, and has long assailed other top former law enforcement and intelligence officials as partisans who sought to block his election.

This could be hugely significant, or the Times going out on a limb again.

The possibility that William Barr and others working for him would expose criminal conduct among key players who tried to take down Trump explains why Democrats have tried so hard to demonize Barr.

Regardless, people are freaking out, including many of the people who build names for themselves and huge Twitter followings by pushing the Russian collusion hoax.


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