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 March 16, 2024

Jordan threatens Fani Willis with contempt over not complying with subpoena

House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan has issued a stern ultimatum to Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, warning of potential contempt of Congress repercussions should she fail to comply with a congressional subpoena regarding her office's handling of federal funds.

The House Judiciary Committee's subpoena, issued in February, seeks documentation pertaining to Willis's administration of federal funds designated to aid at-risk youth, as per details obtained by ABC News.

Jordan's letter

Expressing discontent with the pace of Willis's response, Jordan, an Ohio Republican, emphasized the urgency of the matter in a letter obtained by ABC News.

He noted the absence of additional responsive materials since her initial reply three weeks prior and underscored the necessity for expedited compliance.

Jordan set a strict deadline of 12:00 p.m. on March 28, 2024, for Willis to furnish all relevant documents. Failure to meet this deadline, he cautioned, could prompt the committee to pursue contempt of Congress proceedings.

The subpoena's details

The subpoena outlines the committee's interest in records pertaining to the allocation and utilization of federal grant funds disbursed by the Department of Justice, alongside any communications or documents referencing allegations of federal fund misappropriation.

Jordan highlighted recent reports alleging Willis's intention to divert a portion of a $488,000 federal grant, earmarked for a Center of Youth Empowerment and Gang Prevention, toward extraneous expenditures.

The backdrop of these developments includes separate scrutiny directed at Willis concerning her association with a senior prosecutor involved in the Georgia election interference case implicating former President Donald Trump and 18 others.

Willis responds

In response to the subpoena, Willis defended her office's handling of federal funds, contending that grant programs prioritize aiding at-risk youth and seeking justice for sexual assault victims. She cited the federal grant-funded Sexual Assault Kit Initiative as a standout success recognized by the United States Attorney General.

Willis maintained that her office's grant programs adhere to Department of Justice stipulations and stressed their efficacy in achieving program objectives.

Beyond the issue of federal funds, the Judiciary Committee's inquiry extends to scrutinizing Willis's investigation into alleged election interference by the former president. Trump has entered a plea of not guilty to all charges in connection with the election probe.

The unfolding saga underscores the high stakes and intricate legal dynamics at play, with Jordan's ultimatum setting the stage for a potential clash between congressional oversight and prosecutorial independence.

As the deadline looms, all eyes are on the response by Willis and the ensuing ramifications for the ongoing investigation.

Written By:
Dillon Burroughs

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