The conservative watchdog Judicial Watch sued the Department of Justice on Tuesday to obtain records related to officials who considered trying to remove President Donald Trump from office.
Judicial Watch, a prominent conservative watchdog, filed the lawsuit after the department failed to respond to earlier information requests.
The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests came in response to news that officials discussed invoking the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office.
Former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe (shown above) sparked the issue during a recent interview with “60 Minutes.” He confirmed during the interview that he had opened a counterintelligence investigation into whether the president was compromised by Russia.
He and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein also discussed removing the president from office.
“It is no surprise that we are facing an immense cover-up of senior FBI and DOJ leadership discussions to pursue a seditious coup against President Trump,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said in a statement.
“This effort to overthrow President Trump is a fundamental threat to our constitutional republic, so Judicial Watch will do everything it can in the courts to expose everything possible about this lawlessness.”
Trump responded to the interview by calling the plan a coup to overthrow him.
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Judicial Watch has suspected that such a discussion did occur before the recent interview confirmed it. The lawsuit argues the department failed to respond to three separate information requests dating back to September 21.
“The biggest abuse of power and corruption scandal in our history, and it’s much worse than we thought. Andrew McCabe (FBI) admitted to plotting a coup (government overthrow) when he was serving in the FBI, before he was fired for lying & leaking.” @seanhannity @FoxNews Treason!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 19, 2019
The FOIA lawsuit specifically asks for all communications related to that discussion from McCabe, Rosenstein and former Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
The lawsuit also seeks all recordings made by any official during meetings in the executive offices, with reports the officials intended to secretly record the president.
Trump has been at the center of a federal investigation throughout most of his time in office. Robert Mueller has been leading the special counsel investigation since it was launched May 2017. His team is looking into possible crimes committed by the president or his associates with a particular focus on whether they colluded with Russian interests during the presidential election of 2016.
Rosenstein appointed Mueller to lead the investigation after former Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from everything related to the allegations.
The special counsel team has faced scrutiny over how it’s handled the investigation. Trump has dubbed the investigation the single greatest “witch hunt” in the country’s history.
The president has also accused Mueller of having conflicts of interest for his close history with people like Comey. Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) and other Republicans have accused agents who were part of the special counsel’s team of bias against the president as well.
Congressional Republicans have expressed their own concerns over the probe. The House Judiciary Committee and House Oversight and Government Reform Committee launched a joint investigation to review questionable DOJ and FBI decisions made during investigations tied to the presidential election.
The House investigation has been reviewing the actions that might have led to the ongoing special counsel investigation against the president. The House Republican investigation called upon multiple federal officials to testify and even accused the agencies of slow-walking document requests at times.
But the investigation eventually tapered out when the new congressional sessions started on January 3 of this year.
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