House Judiciary Committee chair Bob Goodlatte and Oversight Committee chair Trey Gowdy have ended their year-long time- and money-wasting probe of alleged FBI and Justice Department bias against Donald Trump with a seven-page letter calling for still more investigation.
The House GOP leaned heavily on details in an inspector general report released earlier this year to make their arguments about bias having infected the FBI and DOJ’s proceedings. The inspector general’s report found that while certain individuals, such as former top FBI counterintelligence officer Peter Strzok, displayed clear personal bias against Trump, there was no evidence that the conclusions of the investigations themselves were biased.
But after dozens of mostly closed-door interviews and months of high-profile partisan clashes, the seven-page letter comes as a remarkably quiet ending — with lawmakers offering no discernibly new insights or recommendations for how the federal law enforcement agencies erred or might improve their work.
Democrats in Congress were not impressed.
Jerry Nadler, the top Democrat on the judiciary committee, and Elijah Cummings, top Democrat on the oversight panel, are expected to formally end the investigation when they take power in January. Nadler has called it “nonsense”.
California’s Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House intelligence committee, said on Friday evening that the Republican investigation was ending “not with a bang, but with a Friday, buried-in-the-holidays whimper, and one foot out the door”.
After Goodlatte’s and Gowdy’s prolonged and largely unsuccessful effort to divert attention from President Trump’s myriad misdeeds and possible criminal behavior, Nadler, Cummings and Schiff will be chairing their respective committees next year.
And Bob Goodlatte won’t be able to obstruct them.