Watchdog sues DOJ for any secret recordings Rod Rosenstein made in the White House
by Daniel Chaitin
A conservative watchdog is suing the Justice Department for any recordings Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein may have made while attending meetings in the White House.
Judicial Watch announced a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit on Wednesday, which seeks all records of communications between Rosenstein, the office of former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe about using the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump from office.
The lawsuit, filed last week in the U.S. District Court of the District of Columbia, also seeks all audio or visual recordings made by any official in the Office of the Attorney General or Deputy Attorney General of meetings in the executive office of the president or vice president.
The announcement of a lawsuit comes in the midst of an explosive media tour by McCabe, who is promoting his new book, in which he has provided on-the-record corroboration of months-old reports that Rosenstein told Justice Department officials about wearing a “wire” to record conversations with Trump and that he had discussed invoking the 25th Amendment against the president to remove him from office in the days after FBI Director James Comey was fired in the spring of 2017.
The Justice Department claims his version of events was “inaccurate and factually incorrect”and that Rosenstein never authorized the use of a wire to secretly record Trump.
Meanwhile, Trump has accused McCabe and Rosenstein of planning to carry out an “illegal and treasonous” plan against him.
Judicial Watch said it filed its lawsuit after the DOJ ignored three separate FOIA requests dating back to September, around when it was first reported Rosenstein had discussed the 25th Amendment and a secret wire, seeking records from between April 1, 2017 and May 31, 2017.
A Justice Department spokesperson declined to comment for this report.
“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.”
A DOJ source told CNN on Sunday that Rosenstein plans to leave the department by mid-Marchbut that it has nothing to do with McCabe’s claims over the past couple days and that Rosenstein always intended to leave after helping with the transition for his successor upon the confirmation of William Barr to be attorney general.