Conservative government watchdog group, Judicial Watch, has launched a lawsuit against the Barack Obama Presidential Library after it failed to comply with the group’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for records connected with the alleged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
The group, on March 4, 2022, had initially requested the release of records from former Obama administration National Security Advisor, Susan Rice.
The records show dealing of “alleged efforts by the Russian government to interfere with the 2016 presidential election and collude the Trump campaign and the alleged hacking of Democratic National Committee and/or Clinton campaign computer systems.”
The concerned records were not available under FOIA until after five years of the Obama administration and are currently held by the Barack Obama Presidential Library, and the National Archived System.
Judicial Watch submitted a second FOIA request for the White House records on March 7, 2022, seeking records connected with the “infamous January 5, 2017, Oval Office meeting” that involved, then-President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Susan Rice, FBI Director James Comey, CIA Director John Brennan, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, and other members.
In its findings, Judicial Watch reports that Rice “oddly” memorized and summarized the meeting in an email that was written weeks later in the “final hours” of the Obama administration on January 20, 2017.
“President Obama began the conversation by stressing his continued commitment to ensuring that every aspect of this issue is handled by the Intelligence and law enforcement communities ‘by the book,’” Rice noted in the email.
“The President stressed that he is not asking about, initiating or instructing anything from a law enforcement perspective. He reiterated that our law enforcement team needs to proceed as it normally would be by the book,” she wrote.
Then-acting Attorney General, Sally Yates, was also attending the meeting in question, as found in Rice’s email. Furthermore, a report from the Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General mentions, “Clapper, then NSA Director Michael Rogers, Brennan, and Comey,” also attended the meeting.
In his book, Comey later confirmed that in the meeting, he had briefed Obama “on his plan to confront President-elect Trump with the Clinton campaign ‘dossier.’”
“The records we are seeking go to the heart of the Obama administration’s efforts to undermine the incoming president, Donald J. Trump, and tie up his new administration in a phony scandal,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said in a press release.
“And the Obama Library is part of the same National Archives system that is subjecting President Trump to unprecedented harassment about Trump White House record keeping practices,” he remarked.
Obama "Library" (Biden National Archives) hiding documents about his spy op against Trump — part the worst government corruption scandal in American history! @JudicialWatch sues! https://t.co/5M1qwMexXj pic.twitter.com/Iho4x2Lslv
— Tom Fitton (@TomFitton) November 10, 2022
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