Update: CREW has received records from the Department of Justice that show Barr and Durham in frequent communication. While news reports indicated Durham traveling on behalf of Barr, these calendar entries did not document those travels. Review the records here and here.
October 16, 2019
CREW sued the DOJ after receiving no response to our June 7, 2019 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to the Department for the disclosure of Attorney General William Barr’s calendar entries reflecting appointments of any kind with John H. Durham, U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut.
On May 13, 2019, it was reported that Barr had tasked Durham with investigating the origins of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election, despite the fact that there was already an ongoing DOJ investigation on the same issue. Barr had previously echoed Trump’s suggestion that the FBI had “spied” on the Trump presidential campaign, even though there has been no evidence supporting the claim.
The public deserves to know if Barr initiated the Russia investigation in order to appease the President and if Durham was corresponding with Barr in a way that would affect his leadership in the investigation. Barr’s involvement in Trump’s Ukraine misconduct demonstrates his lack of impartiality and gives us even more reason to put Barr’s communications with Durham under greater public scrutiny. CREW requested an investigation into Barr, and requested his recusal from all matters related to the Ukraine call that prompted Trump’s impeachment inquiry.
The calendar appointments will help reveal how deep Barr’s lack of impartiality truly runs, and whether others were implicated.