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By Sarah May on
 December 7, 2023

Lawmakers launch probe of DA Fani Willis' collaboration with Jan. 6 panel

Former President Donald Trump has long characterized the spate of criminal charges against him as the product of politically motivated witch hunts, and now Fulton County, Georgia District Attorney Willis, who is overseeing one such case, is facing scrutiny from Republicans in Congress over possible collusion with the now-defunct, Democrat-led Jan. 6 committee, as NBC News reports.

Specifically, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) and Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-GA) have announced the launch of a probe into communications and possible collaboration between Willis and former Jan. 6 committee chair Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS).

According to a Tuesday press release from the Judiciary Committee, the lawmakers decided to initiate the aforementioned inquiry after learning that Willis' office had engaged in coordination with the highly-partisan, Nancy Pelosi-appointed select committee at the same time she was conducting her own investigation of Trump.

The release said that the newfound knowledge of the D.A.'s activities “raises additional questions relevant to the Committee's oversight of Willis' politically motivated prosecution of a former president of the United States and several former senior federal officials.”

“The partisan January 6 Committee had a troubling track record of procedural abuses and due process violations,” the Judiciary panel communication explained.

According to Jordan and Loudermilk, the Jan. 6 panel “only solicited evidence from a select set of relevant individuals, ignored exculpatory evidence, and did not pursue witnesses with evidence that would not advance its partisan narrative.”

The committee, in the Republicans' estimation, “cherrypicked selective information to create false and misleading public narratives,” and therefore, they added, “[t]o the extent that Willis's politically motivated prosecutions are now relying in any way on records obtained from the partisan January 6 Select Committee, it only reinforces concerns about her and Chairman Thompson's commitment to due process and whether they have fulfilled their obligations to properly disclose this material.”

Articulating what the Republicans view as the problem the aforementioned alignment presents, Loudermilk said, “The coordination between Fulton County, GA District Attorney Fani Willis and Pelosi's January 6 Select Committee should be concerning to everyone.”

“This new information raises questions about Willis' and Thompson's commitment to due process, and whether House rules were violated when the Select committee failed to properly disclose this material,” Loudermilk added. “We have serious concerns about this behavior and we are seeking the truth.”

This is not the first time Willis has attracted negative attention from congressional investigators for her pursuit of Trump, with Jordan having announced in August an inquiry into whether she colluded with special counsel Jack Smith, currently overseeing two federal criminal cases against the former president.

Referencing that probe, the Republican legislators said in this week's letter to Willis, “On August 24, 2023, we wrote to you, requesting production of three categories of documents to advance the Committee's oversight of politically motivated prosecutions by state and local officials.”

The lawmakers then detailed their belief that Willis subsequently failed to properly or thoroughly respond to their requests for information, likely adding to their concerns about the recent discovery of her interactions with Thompson and the Jan. 6 committee.

As such, Jordan and Loudermilk are now seeking production of all communications between Willis' office and the Jan. 6 panel as well as any documents obtained as a result of The D.A.'s outreach to Thompson.

In response to the letter he received on the matter, Thompson took issue with the Republicans' characterization of the situation, saying, as NBC News noted, “As I have said time and again, the [Jan. 6 committee] archived its official records in accordance with House rules. Only the Committee on House Administration is in possession of these records and Mr. Loudermilk is fully aware of this.”

Written By:
Sarah May

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