Special Counsel May Be Appointed to Investigate Clintons and Uranium One Deal

AG Jeff Sessions instructed federal prosecutors to look into 'certain issues' pertaining to Obama-era controversies, say reports

by Kathryn Blackhurst | Updated 14 Nov 2017 at 12:11 PM

Attorney General Jeff Sessions directed senior federal prosecutors to look into whether the Department of Justice should appoint a special counsel to investigate the Clinton Foundation and issues connected to the controversial Obama-era Uranium One deal, multiple news organizations reported Monday.

Sessions requested that the prosecutors evaluate “certain issues” pertaining to the deal, which allowed a Russian government-owned company to purchase a uranium firm with mines in the U.S. In a letter to House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and other committee members obtained by Fox News, Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd responded to the committee’s requests for a special counsel appointment.

"The attorney general has directed senior federal prosecutors to evaluate certain issues raised in your letters," Boyd wrote. "These senior prosecutors will report directly to the attorney general and the deputy attorney general [Rod Rosenstein], as appropriate, and will make recommendations as to whether any matters not currently under investigation should be opened, whether any matters currently under investigation require further resources, or whether any matters merit the appointment of a special counsel."

Related: 'Uranium One' Informant to Speak to Congress

NBC News also obtained the letter, noting that Boyd emphasized that he was neither confirming nor denying the existence of a current DOJ investigation, as per the department's policies.

"While this policy can be frustrating, especially on matters of great public concern, it is necessary to ensure that the department acts with fairness and thoughtfulness, and always in a manner consistent with the law and rules of the department," Boyd wrote.

At the time of the deal, several investors in Uranium One were Clinton Foundation donors and had ties to former President Bill Clinton.

Although Boyd wouldn't confirm or deny the existence of any current investigations, his letter was issued in response to a letter Goodlatte penned earlier in which he mentioned his concerns about the "WikiLeaks disclosures concerning the Clinton Foundation and its potentially unlawful international dealings" and "connections between the Clinton campaign, or the Clinton Foundation, and foreign entities, including those from Russia and Ukraine."

At the time of the Uranium One deal, 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton was serving as secretary of state. In addition, several investors in Uranium One were Clinton Foundation donors and had ties to her husband, former President Bill Clinton.

Related: Sessions Vows to Review Obama's Uranium Deal with Russia

Goodlatte also requested that the DOJ investigate how its own policies and the FBI's own procedures "were not followed in connection with, or in actions leading up to or related to" former FBI Director James Comey's public announcements made during the 2016 presidential election. These pertain to the FBI's investigation into Clinton's use of a private email server during her tenure as secretary of state.

"The Department has forwarded a copy of your letters to the IG [inspector general] so he can determine whether he should expand the scope of his investigation based on the information contained in those letters," Boyd assured Goodlatte. "Once the IG's review is complete, the Department will assess what, if any, additional steps are necessary to address any issues identified by that review."

President Donald Trump publicly and repeatedly has voiced his concerns about the DOJ and FBI's handling of the scandals connected with Clinton, her family's foundation and the Uranium One deal.

"Everybody is asking why the Justice Department (and FBI) isn't looking into all of the dishonesty going on with Crooked Hillary & the Dems," Trump tweeted on November 3. "....People are angry. At some point the Justice Department, and the FBI, must do what is right and proper. The American public deserves it!"

(photo credit, homepage images: Hillary Clinton, Black & White/Colorized, CC BY-SA 2.0, by Gage Skidmore; photo credit, article images: Hillary Clinton, CC BY-SA 2.0, by Gage Skidmore)

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