House Republicans Begin Investigating Willis Before Trump’s Atlanta Booking
House Republicans took aim on Thursday at the Georgia prosecutor bringing a sweeping felony racketeering case against former President Donald J. Trump for his efforts to overturn the 2020 election, moving to investigate the woman pursuing the case just hours before Mr. Trump was to be booked at an Atlanta jail.
Representative Jim Jordan, Republican of Ohio and chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, announced he was opening an inquiry into Fani T. Willis, the Fulton County, Ga., district attorney, questioning whether she had collaborated with Biden administration officials and targeting any federal funding her office receives.
Mr. Trump is charged with 13 felony counts in Georgia in an indictment that accuses him of engaging in a “criminal enterprise” that sought to overturn his 2020 election loss. Among the 18 other defendants in the case are his onetime personal lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani, and Mr. Trump’s final White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows, who is also a former House Republican and close friend of Mr. Jordan’s.
In a letter to Ms. Willis sent on Thursday, Mr. Jordan accused her of carrying out a politically motivated prosecution.
“Turning first to the question of motivation, it is noteworthy that just four days before this indictment, you launched a new campaign fund-raising website that highlighted your investigation into President Trump,” he wrote.
Mr. Jordan said he was demanding all documents and communications between Ms. Willis’s office and federal officials and any relating to the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office’s use of federal funds. A review of budget documents indicates that most of the office’s funding comes from local government, though prosecutors’ offices often receive at least some federal grant money.
Ms. Willis’s office declined to comment.
It was the latest example of House Republicans allied with Mr. Trump using their power in Congress to try to derail efforts to prosecute him. After Alvin L. Bragg, the Manhattan district attorney, filed charges against the former president over accusations that he falsified business records related to hush money paid to an adult film actress, Republicans promised to scrutinize the work of Mr. Bragg and held a field hearing in New York that aimed to blame him for crime in the city.
They have also vowed to investigate the Justice Department for its inquiries of Mr. Trump over the effort to overturn the 2020 election and his handling of classified documents, both of which have resulted in indictments. Mr. Jordan has recommended House Republicans “eliminate any funding for the F.B.I. that is not absolutely essential for the agency to execute its mission, including as a starting point eliminating taxpayer funding for any new F.B.I. headquarter facility and instead examining options for relocating the F.B.I.’s headquarters outside of the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area.”
He has pushed for any new F.B.I. headquarters to be in Alabama.
Mr. Trump now faces 91 felony charges across the four criminal cases against him.
In announcing the indictment against Mr. Trump last week, Ms. Willis said politics played no role in her decision.
“I make decisions in this office based on the facts and the law,” she said. “The law is completely nonpartisan. That’s how decisions are made in every case.” She added that her office had brought 11 other racketeering cases before filing charges against Mr. Trump: “We followed the same process. We look at the facts. We look at the law, and we bring charges.”
Luke Broadwater covers Congress. He was the lead reporter on a series of investigative articles at The Baltimore Sun that won a Pulitzer Prize and a George Polk Award in 2020. More about Luke Broadwater
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