DOJ to probe if its officials tried to alter vote

The Justice Department's internal watchdog announced on Monday that he has launched an investigation into whether any DOJ official "engaged in an improper attempt" to have the department seek to alter the outcome of the presidential election.

The statement from Inspector General Michael Horowitz came after the New York Times reported that Jeffrey Clark, the department's acting assistant attorney general for the Civil Division, had plotted with then-President Donald Trump in a failed attempt to oust the acting attorney general at the time, so that a probe of alleged voter fraud in Georgia could be launched.

The Times reported that Clark was sympathetic to Trump's so-called "Stop the Steal" campaign, and that he met with Republican Congressman Scott Perry of Pennsylvania to discuss a plan to have the Justice Department send Georgia a letter disclosing the department would investigate the election results.

But the plot was ultimately foiled after other senior leaders in the department threatened to resign if Clark was appointed acting attorney general.

On December 1, former Attorney General Bill Barr said the Justice Department had found no evidence of widespread voter fraud, even as Trump and his lawyer Rudy Giuliani sought to push the DOJ to look into their false claim that the election had been stolen.

Barr later submitted his resignation, stepping down just before Christmas.

Video Transcript

- The Justice Department's internal watchdog announced on Monday that he has launched an investigation into whether any DOJ official, quote, "engaged in an improper attempt to have the Department seek to alter the outcome of the presidential election." The statement from inspector General Michael Horowitz comes after the "New York Times" reported that Jeffrey Clark, the department's acting assistant attorney general for the civil division, had plotted with then-president Donald Trump in a failed attempt to oust the acting attorney general at the time so that a probe of alleged voter fraud in Georgia could be launched.

The Times reported that Clark was sympathetic to Trump's so-called stop the steal campaign and that he met with Republican Congressman Scott Perry of Pennsylvania to discuss a plan to have the Justice Department send Georgia a letter disclosing the Department would investigate the election results. But the plot was ultimately foiled after other senior leaders in the Department threatened to resign if Clark was appointed acting attorney general. On December 1, former attorney general Bill Barr said the Justice Department had found no evidence of widespread voter fraud, even as Trump and his lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, sought to push the DOJ to look into their false claim that the election had been stolen. Barr later submitted his resignation, stepping down just before Christmas.