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The swamp wins! The Department of Justice this week made a plea deal with former House IT specialist Imran Awan, allowing him to walk away free on probation.
Federal prosecutors on Tuesday entered a plea deal with Imran Awan, ringleader of the Pakistani family at the center of the House IT scandal, and in the process defied President Donald Trump and explicitly contradicted congressional investigators who described the group as “an ongoing and serious risk to the House of Representatives.” In a statement to the court, Department of Justice (DOJ) prosecutors said they “found no evidence that [Imran] illegally removed House data from the House network or from House members’ offices, stole the House Democratic Caucus server, stole or destroyed House information technology equipment, or improperly accessed or transferred government information.”
The prosecutors told the court they would not object if Awan received probation, and they agreed to drop fraud-related charges against his wife. The deal means Awan is free to leave the country and won’t face prosecution in connection with his congressional employment.
The DOJ announcement flew directly in the face of Trump’s June 7, 2018, tweet saying, “Our Justice Department must not let Awan & Debbie Wasserman Schultz off the hook. The Democrat I.T. scandal is a key to much of the corruption we see today. They want to make a ‘plea deal’ to hide what is on their Server. Where is Server? Really bad!”
Trump is by law the boss of the Department of Justice, but prosecutors there continue to act as if they are in charge and the president is merely an annoyance who must be bypassed. Moreover, these prosecutors appear to have been working entirely in league with House Democrats to squash this investigation, from the beginning. Because Trump did not take control, they have now succeeded.
I should add that this case demonstrates clearly that Trump is not really acting to drain the swamp. He is cleaning out a few select agencies (EPA), but allowing the rest to remain, with the worst being Justice and the FBI. Trump is essentially a transitional president. The question remains: What are we transitioning to? To me, it increasingly appears we are transitioning to the fall of our democratic government and the freedom it formerly gave to all citizens, equal before the law. And that I write this on Independence Day is more than tragic.