What you need to know about the Justice Department snooping on journalists and Democrats in Congress

A slow-burn story reveals how the Trump administration tried to hunt down its perceived political enemies without telling them it was seizing their data

Thursday 17 June 2021 17:17
<p>Jeff Sessions, Donald Trump’s first attorney general</p>

Jeff Sessions, Donald Trump’s first attorney general

Critics of former president Donald Trump are increasingly enraged by revelations that during his presidency, the Justice Department used subpoenas to obtain data belonging to the president’s perceived political enemies. From journalists in contact with government leakers to Democratic members of Congress to even the White House counsel, the administration appears to have gone alarmingly far in using legal force to investigate its targets.

Anger at the developing scandal has reached a fever pitch, with calls for former attorneys general Jeff Sessions and Bill Barr to testify on Capitol Hill. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler – who is leading other investigations into Mr Trump – has said his panel will now investigate what happened.

To understand why this affair is so significant and what implications it could have for the Justice Department under Joe Biden, here’s where it all began.

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