Attorney General Merrick Garland assured the Senate that the DOJ investigation into the January 6th insurrection is wide ranging and goes up the chain of command.
October 30, 2021

During the Senate Judiciary Committee oversight hearing on Wednesday, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse asked AG Merrick Garland for reassurance that the criminal investigations into January 6th have not been “constrained” to only those who entered the Capitol.

Garland said he’s “very limited” as to what he can say because his department’s criminal investigation is “going forward.” But he hinted to Whitehouse that the investigation is much bigger.

Garland: The investigation is being conducted by the prosecutors in the US Attorney’s Office and by the FBI field office. We have not constrained them in any way.

Whitehouse: Great. And the old doctrine of “follow the money,” which is a well-established principle of prosecution, is alive and well?

Garland: It’s fair to say that all investigative techniques of which you’re familiar and some, maybe, that you’re not familiar with because they post-date your time are all being pursued in this matter.

Constitutional expert Laurence Tribe thinks Garland is being too timid.

Elie Mystal, writing before Garland’s October 27 testimony, blasted the DOJ for “letting the coup plotters get away."

And a “not constrained” investigation hardly sounds the same as "zealously pursuing."

But people whom I respect just as much think Garland is doing just fine. For example, John Dean:

Marcy Wheeler agrees. “We are still just nine months into this investigation, an instant in the terms of complex conspiracy investigations like this one,” she pointed out, and “It’s not clear what DOJ is going to be able to prove in court.”

But even though Wheeler says “for now” the DOJ appears to be on the right track, and I’m willing to grant that Garland needs time to quietly build what will have to be a solid case, if he can’t get it done before Republicans take back Congress, all bets could be off.

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