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Anti-Trump DOJ Officials Prepare Attacks On His Appointees During Election Year

The DOJ’s troubles are at least partly the result of an inspector general who has completely fallen down on the job of holding the agency accountable.

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The Department of Justice, and specifically its Office of Inspector General (OIG), loves to give the impression that its offices are staffed by independent, nonpartisan lawyers whose only goal is to investigate and root out corruption within the department. Records, however, show the watchdog is staffed by Democrat activists eager to use their power to crush their political enemies.

This partisanship has been on display in how the OIG, the DOJ’s internal watchdog office, has gone about investigating Trump’s Justice Department, particularly its scrutiny of two investigations by then-Attorney General William Barr. These IG “investigations,” reports on which are forthcoming, entail analyzing press releases and other communications to see if the DOJ broke the law or violated departmental guidance when it announced its own investigations.

While many Americans wish Trump’s Department of Justice had done far more to root out election problems in 2020, partisan Democrats in OIG say Barr and other Trump officials did too much by even acknowledging the existence of discarded Trump ballots that were found in Pennsylvania during the 2020 election. Despite a lengthy, expensive, and invasive investigation, Trump appointees will reportedly be found to have neither broken laws nor violated DOJ policies, once the report is issued.

According to multiple sources familiar with the matter, partisan Democrats in the watchdog office are also investigating Trump appointees for requesting data from the governors of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Michigan after they required nursing homes to admit Covid-19 patients into their vulnerable populations, often without adequate testing.

Really.

Trust in the DOJ has absolutely cratered in recent years, mostly due to its leading role in spreading the Democrat-funded lie that Trump won the 2016 election by colluding with Russia, a conspiracy theory still believed by many Democrats. The department has also run interference for alleged lawbreakers in the Biden family business, engaged in unprecedented and disparate prosecutions of Republicans, and coordinated the shocking FBI home raid and lawfare against former President Donald Trump ahead of the 2024 election. Biden Attorney General Merrick Garland conspired with Democrat groups to target concerned parents of school children and oversaw the targeting of Catholics as domestic terrorists.

The DOJ isn’t particularly concerned about these things. Instead, it is complaining about a couple of anodyne press releases and memos from Trump officials that weren’t even really acted on as they should have been.

It’s a perfect example of the brokenness of Justice’s OIG, which boasts more than 500 special agents, auditors, inspectors, and attorneys — ostensibly to root out abuse and misconduct at the DOJ and FBI. There’s plenty of egregious abuse and misconduct to investigate in the notoriously troubled department. Former Special Counsel John Durham famously said he would suggest no additional rules to prevent the types of actions taken in the shameful Russia-collusion hoax because the problem wasn’t a lack of rules but that “the FBI’s guiding principles of ‘Fidelity, Bravery and Integrity’ are not engrained in the hearts and minds of those sworn to meet the FBI’s mission of ‘Protect[ing] the American People and Uphold[ing] the Constitution of the United States.’”

Partisan Democrats at DOJ

The IG officials behind the forthcoming reports are, like so many of their colleagues, partisan Democrat activists engaged in left-wing judicial activity. Here are a few of them.

Christine Monta, who according to sources participated in the IG’s investigation into the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania’s inquiry into mail-in ballot mishandling, now works for the left-wing MacArthur Justice Center, which brags about its legal efforts against Trump. She previously was one of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division lawyers on the 2015 lawsuit the Obama administration brought to force public schools to allow boys in girls’ bathrooms. She also joined then-Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta in challenging Texas’ voter ID law. Monta made $1,014.50 in political donations in 2019 and 2020, all of which were to Elizabeth Warren’s presidential campaign or ActBlue. Monta clerked for left-wing Judge Stephen Reinhardt.

Jennifer Smith Ramella, who is involved in investigating the DOJ’s look into deaths in state-run nursing homes in 2020, according to the sources familiar with the matter, made 33 donations between 2020 and 2022, all to ActBlue, the Democrats’ funding mechanism.

And then there’s Deborah Zerwitz, a former counsel to President Barack Obama’s former Assistant Attorney General Leslie Caldwell, herself a rabid leftist. At the IG’s office, Zerwitz is working on the inquiry into Barr and other Trump appointees for their nursing home deaths investigation, the sources say. Her 35 political donations totaling $6,466 since 2007 have gone exclusively to Democrats, including the $3,866 she gave in 2020 to groups such as Biden for President, Biden Victory Fund, and Biden Fight Fund. She is one of the highest-paid employees in the OIG.

Social Media Betrays Left-Wing Bias

Deborah Zerwitzsocial media accounts indicate strongly held views. She has “liked” more than 1,300 posts since February 2019, almost exclusively from left-wing media and radical Democrats.

Against Trump and for Democrats, specifically Biden — Zerwitz liked tweets calling for people to vote Democrat and against Trump and every “Trump enabler” they could find. One tweet she liked during 2020 said, “It wasn’t just Trump. The entire GOP knew. They all gotta go. Every single one.” Another from Hakeem Jeffries said, “The House Republican Crackpot Caucus is larger than ever.”

She liked a tweet saying, “We need to send Donald Trump packing, but we can’t stop there. We need to boot his Republican enablers out of office — at every level of government.” She liked tweets from Democrat operatives encouraging people not to be disheartened when 2020 votes came in, as later ballots would turn the vote toward Biden. When Biden was called the victor in 2020, she liked tweets celebrating his win.

She also liked tweets pushing for Joe Biden’s election in 2020, characterizing the choice as one of democracy versus fascism. She liked a tweet calling Pete Buttigieg “brilliant” and others praising Biden appointees Merrick Garland, Vanita Gupta, and Lisa Monaco. She liked tweets celebrating the nominations of people who had worked with Robert Mueller and Andrew Weissmann, two key agents in the Russia-collusion conspiracy theory promulgated against Trump by the DOJ.

She liked tweets from former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Democrat journalist April Ryan talking about nursing homes, and she follows an Obama appointee who used to work for New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, whose policies were also being investigated.

She also liked tweets praising Hillary Clinton and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, plus tweets from Ocasio-Cortez attacking Sens. Murkowski, Collins, and Manchin, since they sometimes voted for Republican judicial nominees.

And as much as Zerwitz hates Republicans, she loves Nancy Pelosi and Hakeem Jeffries. “Nancy Pelosi has a cool head in a crisis,” reads one liked tweet. “Hakeem Jeffries is a superstar,” reads another.

But Wait, There’s More

Against pro-Trump officials — Zerwitz liked tweets supporting discipline for government employees, including police officers, publicly expressing their political views. She liked an Aug. 25, 2020, tweet from Julie Zebrak, who critiqued Republican political appointees by saying she “spent 19 years as a federal government attorney. I left so that I could help a political campaign and not run afoul of a law preventing fed employees from being political…”

She liked tweets attacking Mike Pence, Trump cabinet officials, and even Ivanka Trump. She liked a tweet from left-wing account “JoJoFromJerz” that said of Kayleigh McEnany, “I hate her.”

Against Republican lawmakers and campaigns — Zerwitz’s hatred of Republicans extended beyond Trump officials. She liked one tweet calling for the ouster of Sen. Mitch McConnell for “eroding our democracy” and another one pushing for Amy McGrath to defeat him in his last election. She liked a tweet encouraging Trump to give Covid to McConnell, Lindsey Graham, Matt Gaetz, Marco Rubio, Tom Cotton, and Ted Cruz. She liked a tweet calling for the removal of 15 Republican senators from the impeachment jury so Trump could be convicted.

Zerwitz liked one tweet calling for the expansion of the Supreme Court to retaliate against McConnell, one by Valerie Jarrett attacking Graham, and one pushing for Graham’s political opponent. She liked tweets opposing Sens. Chuck Grassley, Josh Hawley, Ron Johnson, John Cornyn, Ted Cruz, and others. She liked several tweets highlighting Kelly Loeffler’s WNBA team protesting her and campaigning for her opponent.

One post Zerwitz liked said any Republican who attended a mask-optional New Year’s party shouldn’t be allowed to go to the joint session of Congress on Jan. 6, specifically calling out Gaetz and Sen. Rand Paul. She liked a tweet criticizing Kevin McCarthy for talking about vaccines.

Against conservative causes and for Democrat ones — Zerwitz liked tweets about prosecutors opposing investigations into 2020 election problems. She liked tweets about the PGA canceling golf tournaments at Trump courses and a Jake Tapper tweet making fun of Big Tech censorship of conservatives.

After Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis sent some illegal border crossers to Martha’s Vineyard, she liked a tweet saying the migrants were “crime victims.” She liked tweets from race hustler Ibram Kendi, tweets in favor of defunding police, and tweets in favor of reparations. She liked a tweet saying “white people” need to support housing/zoning reform and school funding “equity,” and another asking, “Why are mythical white grievances prioritized over the well being of black kids?” She liked tweets in support of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley when he embraced critical race theory for the military.

She also liked many pro-abortion tweets, such as those calling for abortion on demand through all nine months of pregnancy and numerous others opposing those who protect life in the womb. She liked others calling for an end to the filibuster, expressing racism toward white men, supporting drag shows for children, and supporting transing children.

Zerwitz’s likes included incendiary and hateful language against Americans who are Republican. One tweet began, “Attention QANON, MAGAT Fascists,” and ended, “SO F*CK OFF.” She liked a tweet that referred to “Trump and his racist homophobic cult members.”

She liked tweets attacking Fox News and The Federalist. She follows accounts called “Decoding Fox News” and another that says of the account holder, “I watch Fox News so you don’t have to.”

Against SCOTUS — On her social media accounts, Zerwitz follows Demand Justice, a dark-money-funded group that pushes for left-wing judges and attacks the Supreme Court and Republican-nominated judges.

She liked tweets attacking Clarence Thomas, Brett Kavanaugh, and Amy Coney Barrett. More than a month after a left-wing activist was arrested for an assassination attempt on Kavanaugh and his family at their home, she liked a tweet supporting protests at conservative justices’ homes.

She liked a litany of tweets upset that the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the religious rights of a Christian athletic coach. She also liked tweets opposing the overturning of Roe v. Wade.

Against Trump’s DOJ — Zerwitz liked tweets concerning ongoing DOJ cases, such as its political prosecutions of Donald Trump and Gen. Michael Flynn, including one tweet suggesting that Flynn have his rank and pension removed. She liked a tweet attacking the White House statement on the commutation of Roger Stone’s sentence.

Zerwitz liked myriad tweets attacking former Attorney General Bill Barr, the Trump DOJ, President Trump, and other Trump administration officials, including a Norm Ornstein tweet calling for disbarring Trump White House lawyers. She liked a Joyce Alene tweet praising a DOJ official for quitting over a Barr memo noting that federal prosecutors had the authority to investigate election problems but that they should avoid “specious, speculative, fanciful or far-fetched claims.” She also liked tweets saying that “not a single career prosecutor at DOJ will miss Bill Barr,” and claiming that Barr had desecrated the DOJ.

Zerwitz liked a Sept. 21, 2020, tweet from anti-Trump outfit Just Security that said, “To justify unfettered political control over @TheJusticeDept, Barr promotes myth of unaccountable career prosecutor.”

Some myth. Zerwitz and her colleagues receive civil service pay and benefits but are frequently operating as Democrat operatives who use their power to go after political opponents. It is unlikely any will be held accountable.

Leak Expert

Before her time with the IG office, Zerwitz worked at DOJ’s Criminal Division, which develops, enforces, and supervises the application of all federal criminal laws. In fact, she worked in the Office of Enforcement Operations, which “oversees the use of the most sophisticated investigative tools at the Department’s disposal.” Her director there in 2017 described her as a senior counsel “with extensive experience” in the policies governing investigations of leaks to the media.

While the DOJ leaked like a sieve during the Trump years, frequently destroying lives and leading to chaos with global implications, few if any leaks were properly investigated.

Unfortunately, the culture of the IG’s office is no different than other DOJ offices. Take, for example, Jake Klonoski, son of a previous Oregon Democrat Party chairman and a longtime Democrat activist who was given an award for a report sympathizing with DOJ’s generous handling of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s blatant and premeditated mishandling of classified information.

In an alumnus profile with Stanford Law School, Klonoski said he decided to go to law school after witnessing what he claimed was “the backlash against Muslim-Americans in DC” following the 2001 attacks committed by Islamist terrorists. He said two of his favorite memories of his time on campus were protests of Bush appointee John Yoo and being part of coordinated so-called gay rights efforts such as redefining marriage. Klonoski clerked for left-wing federal Judge Harry Pregerson of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit before working for the IG.

Klonoski suddenly left the IG office where he served as an attorney-adviser in December 2020. After he left, he bragged to Stanford Law School about his work on another report going after Republican appointees’ policy of “zero tolerance” for illegal border crossers, even if they crossed the border with children.

That report came out in January 2021, but according to an investigation by the Housing and Urban Development’s inspector general, it was leaked to The New York Times and NBC News by an attorney-adviser in the DOJ IG’s office in October 2020 to negatively affect Trump’s electoral chances that year. The name of the identified leaker was redacted from the report.

While the attorney-adviser named by HUD’s IG strenuously denied he was the leaker, he also “submitted his immediate resignation via e-mail shortly before midnight on December [REDACTED] 2020, soon after receiving a questionnaire from DOJ OIG that would have required him to affirm that he had not provided information about the [zero tolerance policy] Review to members of the media.” That departure was covered by Politico without naming the leaker. Klonoski did not respond to requests for comment.

After his sudden resignation in December 2020, Klonoski went on to work for Oregon Democrat Peter DeFazio and the Democrat House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. It is unclear if DeFazio or other Democrats understood the cause of his resignation from the IG office before hiring him.

The DOJ’s troubles are at least partly the result of an inspector general who has completely fallen down on the job of holding the agency accountable. Allowing political investigators who show very bad judgment to do political investigations in election years certainly does not do much to improve the reputation.


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