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HomeGeneralUS Justice Department Rejects Republicans Call for Audio of Biden Interview

US Justice Department Rejects Republicans Call for Audio of Biden Interview

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Source: Reddit

The Justice Department has denied a request from House Republicans to record special counsel Robert Hur’s interview with President Joe Biden, as department officials dispute the lawmakers’ threats. Republican lawmakers that Attorney General Merrick Garland would hold Congress in contempt if they did not comply.

The Justice Department argued in a letter obtained by USA TODAY that it provided House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, and House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer, R-Ky.  all the information the GOP needed and that the department cooperated fully.

Their contempt threat against Garland, Assistant Attorney General Carlos Felipe Uriarte wrote to Jordan and Comer on Monday, “is difficult to explain in terms of lack of information” based on “the actual conduct of the department.

“We are therefore concerned that the Committee is disappointed not because you have not received the information, but because you have received it,” the letter continued.

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We urge committees to avoid conflict rather than seek it. Republicans pushed for interviews to be recorded after Hur released an explosive report earlier this year detailing Biden’s handling of classified information.

Hur ultimately concluded that Biden should not face criminal charges, in part because of a lack of evidence and what his office called the president’s poor memory. Biden had a two-day meeting with Hur last year about handling his documents after his term as vice president.

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Hur testified before the House Judiciary Committee in a lengthy hearing in March and stood by the findings of his report. The Justice Department noted  Monday that along with Hur’s testimony, “the committees received an extraordinary amount of information — and quickly.

“Jordan and Comer sent a letter to Garland in March stating that the redacted transcripts provided by the DOJ were “insufficient” and requesting the full, unredacted transcript and audio files audio of Hur’s interviews with Biden and his ghostwriter, Mark Zwonitzer.

The committee chairs gave the ministry until Monday to respond to their request. “Failure to do so will result in committees considering further action, such as citing contempt for congressional procedures,” the two men wrote.

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Along with the letter, the DOJ sent lawmakers a transcript of Zwonitzer’s interviews with Hur “as a supplemental correction,” although the Department is not clear that the Committee has established a need for additional supplementing these records.

The Department alleges in the letter that Republican’s interests “may not include receiving information for legitimate surveillance or investigative functions, but rather for its purposes.” politics have no role in handling law enforcement records.

Comer responded in a statement that the Biden administration cannot determine what Congress needs and does not need executive branch oversight “The American people demand transparency from their leaders, not obstruction,” Comer continued. “We will respond to the Department of Justice soon.” 

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