🧵Here we go! It's 2:02 p.m. Looks like Senator Sheehan is presiding. She thanked the AG for recovering the ransomware payments

It's a $36 billion budget request. Double resources on office of violence against women as a positive highlight.

But, she has "some concerns."

Sheehan is the chair of the subcommittee. That is why she is presiding. She said there are modest increases to law enforcement, with one exception, the bureau of prisons. She's concerned as says BOP needs funds to help inmates with training and medical care, aging buildings.

Thanked 115,000 employees of the DOJ for their work through Covid pandemic and response to January 6 attack. "I appreciate the ongoing investigation by the FBI into this event."

Now the ranking member, Senator Moran is speaking. Said a 5.6 percent increase from last fiscal year. Said "the overwhelming bulk of this increase is dedicated to DOJ grant programs."

Said increase at Drug Enforcement Agency will not (or will barely?) keep up with inflation.

Moran is also concerned about lack of increase to the FBI cybercrimes. Questions whether DOJ is focused enough on threats of ransomware.

Sees proposal re the BATF as a broad assault on American's second amendment rights.

But Moran is pleased to see grant programs for de-escalation training, mental health intervention and so on.

Here is the full subcommittee

"Exactly 90 days ago I took the oath of office," Garland begins. His voice is quiet and somewhat hesitant.

Says two top priorities. First is to keep our country and community safe . . .said there are three parts to this one.

These three areas of that top priority:

(1) Foreign and domestic terrorism. $1.5 billion for foreign and domestic counterterrorism

(2) The largest increase in cyber-resources in more than a decade.

(3) Major violent crime and gun violence.

Garland send the second top priority is civil rights and civil liberties. A more than 15 percent increase.

Said almost 65 years after its creation of the DOJ's civil rights division importance remains

Said FY 22 budget also proposes double investment in grant programs to address violence against women.
He also mentioned increase in immigration judges.

Notably AG Garland makes no mention of white collar crime. I am so disappointed.

It's Chair Sheehan's turn to ask questions. She's concerned about the level of support in the crime victim's fund.

"I have a personal commitment to that fund." He said at end of 2022 it should have a $400 million balance and he will look to a way to build up the fund.

"The most important thing in these matters . . .sufficient restitution for the victims."

Sheehan asked whether there have been more requests for assistance from these funds.

Garland: "I don't know the answer. That's a very good question. . My staff will get back to yours."

Sheehan asked about bureau of prisons. Says they are at 95% of authorized positions filled.

"Dramatic increases in the number of hires." As of this May, since last May 900 net new hires at BOP.

Sheehan is asking about covid vaccinations of guards at prisons in NH.

He said 95% of inmates have been offered vaccines and at least 52% have received at least one dose.

He said BOP employees 100% have been offered and something like 60% have one vaccine.

Moran now begins his questions. He's mentioned DOJ using the former president's executive order to the U.S. Marshall Service related to reducing private prisons

Garland says the plan is to move from private space to local government space. Said "I don't think this will be a problem in the longer run" and agrees detention should be near where people live.

Moran asks about the tragic death of federal judge Esther Salas and asked what Garland can explain about increase in funds for judicial security

"It is a big problem, and it is a dangerous problem" and with an increase "in domestic violence extremism" it's a serious threat

Sheehan announced that there will be a brief recess at 3:15.

Next will be Senator Leahy.

Leahy is speaking slowly. He starts by discussing the security of the capitol and hopes we can get the answers behind the January 6 insurrection.

But now, he's moving in to the tough stuff.

Leahy, asks about the criticism he faced with DOJ representing Trump in the defamation case and not releasing the OLC memo (re Barr and the Mueller Report).

"How is this coming about, are these criticism valid?"

"I know about the criticisms . .our job is to represent the American people," not to back any president "our job is to ensure adherence to the rule of law . . the essence of the rule of law" is that "like cases are treated alike." Not one rule for friends and one for foes."

Garland implies if you are criticizing him, you just don't get what law is. It's not "policy."

In short, he claims that he is applying the law and it's absolute. No policy involved. This is false. He's not a computer. This insults judge who disagreed with previous DOJ view.

Senator Capito is speaking. She's asking about background checks through the NICs system.
Stands for National Instant Criminal Background Check System

He said including in the anti-gun-violence programs are state and local grants to NICs, an increase of 62% in funding. I think total might be around $400 million.

Senator Manchin is asking a out the January 6th insurrection and receiving and relaying threat information. How do we increase the coordination between departments.

Responding to questions about January 6, Attorney General Garland said "I am reasonably confident we won't have" an incident like that again.

"Off the top of my head within some margin of error" said it's 456 who have been arrested.

Manchin has some questions about the CARES Act. He said it provided "a unique opportunity for creative fraudsters." He wants to know "how we are doing on that." He said more than $250 million in loans given to ineligible recipients and so on.

"Can you give me an update"

Good. "My last go-round in the Justice Department had to do with Health Care fraud."

He said he gave order to stand up Covid fraud task force. Said criminal and civil division.

"This is a target-rich environment."

"We are hoping this will be a deterrent."

Sheehan asked Attorney Garland to speak into the microphone as we have had trouble hearing him.

Senator Collins is talking about the @propublica article.

"We can be certain of one thing. These highly confidential personal documents were obtained illegally."

Collins said "As we saw during Watergate, there is an incredible danger . . if information is used for political or other purposes." And says people won't pay taxes if they think public disclosure.

🔥"I take this as seriously as you do." He goes on to also compare this to Nixon. Wow.

"I know nothing more about this by what I read in the ProPublica piece."

"This was on my list of things to raise . . I promise you this will be at the top of my list."


"We are not asking to defund the police." He said "we are trying to support trust building . . not to vilify anyone."

Sounds like "good people on both sides."

I really wish we had an Attorney General who seemed passionate about his work and not like he was tired and phoning it in.

Seems like a status quo perpetuator.

Moran asked for a correction to the record. It was the son of Judge Esther Salas who was tragically murdered.

"This is a good question . . ." Does not have a complete answer to Senator Reed's about assaults on airplanes.

Asked what tools the DOJ needs to combat against those who incite and radicalize foreign and domestic terrorists engage in encrypted communications.

"This is a matter of serious concern" he said. He has not decided what tools they need.

Said there's a First Amendment concern about intervening when there is not yet talk of violence.

Reed said there could be an information literacy program to educate people about how disinformation spreads.

Senator Boozman returns to the IRS data getting to ProPublica. Asks whether it makes sense to centralize all that data in one place.

Now he says we have a prosecution on someone who leaks the suspicious activity report data.

Gathering data is very important. He said Treasury was suggesting that for cryptocurrency.

But, we need central access.

Senator Feinstein said she's interested in hate crimes and concerned about anti-Asian discrimination and hate crimes. The hate crimes against Asian-Americans increased 150% last year.

He said he asked for a 30 day review about hate crimes against Asian American and Pacific Islanders. Report came back.

Said Congress passed the two hate crimes act with actions and he says DOJ has take all steps in the statute.

Collins asked about keeping people at "extreme risk" to themselves or loved ones can have guns taken away, then followed by a judicial hearing.

Said states have access to $40 million in grants to help fund that.

Feinstein says she is very concerned about this. And now she returned to anti-Asian hate crimes.

Senator Coons asked about how in his state, Delaware about how police are trying to create a co-responder system where trained people could respond to mental health crises.

What investments will you make to these kind of models?

Garland said police officers are not trained or equipped.

These situations "can get out of hand." I wish he would not speak in euphemisms.

He said funding includes the $40 million and $10 million for training to improve police-based responses.

Senator Coons asked whether AG Garland thought that was sufficient funding.

Garland: "This is a sufficient amount for us to get seriously involved in this."

Senator Coons asked about violence-interruption programs.

Garland said "it's everything from proven violence-interrupters to hospital-based intervention where interruptors go to someone's who's been shot in a hospital to persuade them not to take vengeance."

Now we will have a ten minute break. But first Senator Murkowski had a clarification question as she cannot stay. She asked about increase in demands for Victims of Crime Act Crime Victims Funds.

Said she's facing a 35% to the VOCA funds. This is "frightening everybody."

Victims services people are afraid of the major cuts that are coming.

He said the bigger the fund, the better. "What we need is to be able to put more money into this fund" that could mean expanding crimes that go into it and prosecutors could require restitution in pleas

"Let me ask my team to work on this," he said.

Now ten minute break.

We are back. Senator Graham asked whether he supports allowing Americans to sue other countries due to the coronavirus.

If the Chinese government lied and the virus came from a lab leak Do you agree China should pay somebody?"

Garland said this is a diplomatic issue and an issue for the state department. Said it's not a legal issue

"This is a policy question for the diplomats" he said after Graham said Congress allowed American citizens to sue Saudi Arabia for 9-11 deaths.

Graham said does "defending the police" rhetoric create violence against police. Garland said he doesn't know

"This Justice Department does not believe in defunding the police" we believe in supporting the police and building trust and agrees with holding police accountable

Graham is asking about "illegal crossings" into "this country."

Garland says the pandemic makes a difference but "I don't know the answer."

1.5 million backlogged cases. "The immigration system as a whole is broken" Garland said.

We are on to a second round of questions from the subcommittee. Chair Sheehan begins asking about threats to reporters abroad and likens them to DOJ seizing journalists' phone and email records here.

"Do you commit to ensuring freedom of the press?"

Garland said Biden's view of the 1st Amendment is consistent with his. He said the policies existed for decades. Going forward "we have adopted a policy that is the most protective of journalists to do their jobs in history" Won't use compulsory process in leak investigations
IMPORTANT NOTE: Garland says this going forward policy only applies to investigations other than the leaking itself. Not sure what he means. I hope someone follows up.

Seems like he will grab journalists' records if he believes there was a leak??

Or was it the opposite? Perhaps someone will follow up? @SenatorLeahy?

Garland corrected the record, it's a 1.3 million backlog.

With a grin, he said, I feel bad about that," re possibly incorrectly referencing Hamilton and not Madison

Uh. Were it me, I'd feel bad about hiding behind claim that it was a "legal" necessity to take the Trump defense in @ejeancarroll lawsuit when it's a policy choice

Moran said small rural law enforcement agencies don't have the resources to hire a grant writer (and can't take anyone off the beat).

Senator talking about red flag laws (does not have name plate facing camera.

I think it's Van Hollen. Concerned that not all federal law enforcement provide "this data." But I did not hear what data.

But Garland did direct federal law enforcement to wear cameras.

Senator mentioned George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. Said many cases where 911 called re mental health or substance use. Shouldn't there be alternative responses, NOT police.

Could you work with us to create alternative response? Garland said yes

We have Senator Braun (R-Indiana) and asked whether "same diligence and effort" as applied to January 6 capitol rioters applied to "antifa" and "BLM" protesters.

Garland said "that's a fair question." Said that all happened "before I got here."

Follow this to fix the broken link. The attached tweet is number 60
Apologies. It is Shaheen

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More from @jentaub

9 Jun
Garland sad "we" (meaning the Justice Department before he was there) spent $48 million from civil unrest "during that period."

Braun is asking about the damage to the Capitol.

He asked about the DNI report from March identified "abortion-related violent extremists as a threat" said this was an attack on the "pro-life" community. Asked why BLM and Antifa weren't there.

Read 8 tweets
8 Jun
💯 It has been my dream to work in Washington, in the federal government. I believe I can make a difference. But, as recently as this week, a mentor said I am too vocal. That I need to tone it down. And I tried to censor myself — but that has lasted only for 24 hours.

This window of time feels like death. And if landing and retaining a job requires taking my gloves off when I see injustice in the world, to paraphrase Mark Twain, the job can go to hell then.

To say that I am deeply disappointed in Merrick Garland deciding to take Donald Trump‘s case against E. Jean Carroll is an understatement. It was not legally necessary or ethically correct. Moreover it reflects this country’s long history of racism and misogyny.

Read 10 tweets
4 Jun
🧵 Pull up a chair. I'm spotting some customer abuse that may link to dodgy accounting

It all started this week when my dear friends told me John Legend canceled his concert planned for Tanglewood in August. They found out because the venue emailed them and promised refunds

I purchased my ticket through a website called @ticketoffices and was billed via PayPal by a company called Ticket Fulfillment Services LP.

So, I went to the website and the chat confirmed that the concert was canceled but that I had to phone customer service. So I did.

The phone call lasted nearly 30 minutes during I asked for a full refund and the rep placed me on hold twice so she could "investigate" the situation even after she confirmed it was canceled.

Read 24 tweets
25 May
💥 OMG. They just now unredacted those key portions. So I’m now going to just show you the pages that were previously redacted. I’ll show you the before and after.

Page 20
Before and After

Page 21 Before and After
Read 16 tweets
25 May
✍🏽Here’s the now unsealed May 3 memorandum and order from Judge Amy Berman Jackson

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25 May
🧵 I have a theory about the content of part two of the 2019 memo to Barr on whether the Mueller report provided enough evidence to prosecute Trump fit obstruction. This is the part @TheJusticeDept is holding back.

And though I would have preferred it being released and it’s entirety now, it’s complicated. Let’s walk through this.

Before I do. I want to be clear, I’m not talking about the legal justification/argument for a stay pending appeal. That is set forth very clearly in the court documents.

Read 18 tweets

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