DOJ Considering Releasing Newly Unredacted Portions of Rosenstein Memo to Judicial Watch – Here’s the Redacted Version
The Department of Justice told conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch this week it is considering releasing newly unredacted portions of Rosenstein’s memo detailing Mueller’s scope.
Rosenstein granted Mueller broad authority in an August 2 memo MONTHS after he appointed Mueller to special counsel; only a heavily redacted version has been released.
Via Judicial Watch:
n a May 4 response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit filed by Judicial Watch, the agency revealed that it is now “processing the August 2 memo to determine if it can release additional portions that have not already been filed publicly.” The Justice Department had previously refused to acknowledge that any such “scope” documents exist.
Judicial Watch filed its FOIA lawsuit against the Justice Department on October 5, 2017, after the agency failed to respond to a July 10, 2017, request (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Justice (No. 1:17-cv-02079)). Judicial Watch is seeking:
- A copy of the budget prepared and submitted by Robert S. Mueller III or his staff in his capacity as appointed “Special Counsel to oversee the previously-confirmed FBI investigation of Russian government efforts to influence the 2016 presidential election and related matters.” Temporal scope of this request is from 17 May 2017 to 10 July 2017.
- A copy of all guidance memoranda and communications by which the Justice Management Division will review the Special Counsel’s Office’s “Statement of Expenditures” prior to or for the purpose of making each public. Temporal scope of this request is from 1 June 2017 to present.
- A copy of each document scoping, regulating, or governing the Special Counsel’s Office appointed under the leadership of Mueller III. Temporal scope of this request is from 17 May 2017 to present.
The DOJ finally admitted to Judicial Watch that Rosenstein’s scope memo existed after Judge Ellis lost his temper last week on Mueller’s liberal hack lawyers over their lies and secrecy.
Rosenstein is fiercely working to keep his scope memo under wraps. Judge Ellis gave him two weeks to turn over the unredacted document.
GOP lawmakers are threatening to hold Sessions and Rosenstein in contempt if they do not turn over the memo.
Judicial Watch is also fighting Rosenstein and Mueller in court.
Here is the redacted version of Rosenstein’s August 2nd memo (notice page 2 is almost completely blacked out):
Judicial Watch points out what the Justice Department is hiding in the redactions:
The August Rosenstein memorandum also included a section providing Mueller a “more specific description of your authority,” authorizing the special counsel to expand his prosecution of former Trump advisor Paul Manafort by investigating:
Allegations that Paul Manafort:
- Committed a crime or crimes by colluding with Russian government officials with respect to the Russian government’s efforts to interfere with the 2016 election for President of the United States, in violation of United States law;
- Committed a crime or crimes arising out of payments he received from the Ukrainian government before and during the tenure of President Viktor Yanukovych…
The Justice Department then redacted additional material apparently detailing the “crime or crimes” relating to Ukraine that Mueller was authorized to investigate.
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After outrageous stonewalling (described below), @JudicialWatch may finally get more of Rosenstein’s infamous “scope” memo for Mueller (written months after Mueller’s appointment). Glad to see Judge Ellis asking same questions about @RealDonadTrump probe! https://t.co/ki8t1D4rOI pic.twitter.com/4y9JrGc1ar
— Tom Fitton (@TomFitton) May 9, 2018