The John Durham Investigation Turns 1,000 Days Old Today

By my math, today marks the 1,000th day after Bill Barr first appointed John Durham to undermine the Russian investigation on May 13, 2019. Today marks a major new milestone in Durham’s effort to substantiate the conspiracy theories Barr sent him off chasing years ago.

The Durham investigation has now lasted 326 days longer than the Mueller investigation, not quite half again as long. But I’m sure Durham will last the 11 days required to hit that milestone, too.

At this stage in the aftermath of the Mueller investigation, Billy Barr had started his campaign to undo all punishment arising from it. January 2020 was the month when Barr took the first steps to protect Flynn from the new crimes he had committed in his effort to blow up his past prosecution by appointing Jeffrey Jensen to review the Flynn prosecution — an effort that would end with DOJ admitting that they had altered some notes.

Durham, by contrast, has had a productive last month. Four months after indicting Michael Sussmann, he learned that Sussmann had provided at least one other anonymous tip on behalf of Rodney Joffe, in addition to the one Durham has labeled a crime. Durham also discovered two phones used by James Baker, which he had never before bothered to look for in DOJ IG custody, precisely where he had been told one of them was years earlier.

At the rate Durham is discovering basic things he should have learned years before indicting Sussmann (and, probably, Igor Danchenko), he might be prepared to make a responsible prosecutorial decision about whether to charge these cases in another two years or so.

Update: Typo in table fixed.

42 replies
  1. Badger Robert says:

    I assume this is allowed to continue because Garland and Biden thinks its harmless and pointless.

      • Badger Robert says:

        You’re right. But I think at some point the court is going to conclude this is an enormous waste of time and money. The court will have a way to chop the prosecution’s evidence into small pieces.

          • bmaz says:

            Nope, it is not. Will a court be receptive to motions? Yeah, they may very well be, but that takes time to play out. It doesn’t happen next Tuesday like it always does on Law and Order.

            • Badger Robert says:

              If the court doesn’t like your case they find a way to make you lose on procedural issues until you get the message. As you suggest limiting motions come up and pieces of evidence get excluded. It does take time.

            • TooLoose LeTruck says:

              Are you telling me that the good people who make Law and Order have been misleading me all these years?

              • bmaz says:

                Little bit, yep. CSI is also full of shit. There are some long stories there as to both as to how can be argued to juries in real trials. Some hilarious!

  2. oldoilfieldhand says:

    “It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.”
    Upton Sinclair

    • Phyllis Amenda says:

      Hi—I just had to say that I move your handle. My dad was an old oilfield guy too. I grew up in the oil fields near Coalinga, CA. Take care and keep those oilfields pumping 😀


      • Charles Wolf says:

        Coalinga is the worst speed trap in CA.
        I hate that stinking town… and it really stinks, from tons and tons of cow shit.

        • Rugger9 says:

          They have extended the city limits to reach across I-5, and when one of my house bros (in the ’80s) from Rancho Palos Verdes got ticketed he had to go to trial there. Talk about culture shock, it was the only time I’d heard him be pathetic and mean it.

  3. Al Ostello says:

    From over 1 year ago…and even more true today…

    “If Durham is not actively investigating live criminal matters, the investigation should be terminated. Special counsels don’t exist to write reports. They don’t exist to perform administrative reviews. They exist to investigate and prosecute cases. If there are no cases to prosecute here, then the appointment of Durham is improper and it should be revoked.

    This is clear under the regulations, which state, “The jurisdiction of a Special Counsel shall be established by the Attorney General,” and also make clear that in doing so, the special counsel has “the full power and independent authority to exercise all investigative and prosecutorial functions of any United States Attorney.” Likewise, Barr’s jurisdictional mandate for Durham is super-broad in subject matter but limited to whether people “violated the law.” So to the extent Durham is still examining, for example, whether the intelligence community got Russian interference right in the ICA, that is simply not within the proper purview of a U.S. attorney. And there is no good reason for a new attorney general to allow a roving special counsel appointed by the prior administration to play that role under regulations designed to facilitate criminal investigations.”

  4. Lemmy says:

    Do you think the aim here is to continue trundling along, producing essentially nothing, until Garland tells him it’s time to close up shop……….at which point Trump and his flunkies can start yelling and screaming about Garland’s “COVER UP”? I could see them insisting that Durham was about to finally “deliver the goods” right before Garland shut him down.

    • joel fisher says:

      Your idea was pure craziness for the 1st X# of the 1000 days; then less crazy for the next Y# days of that 1000; and, finally… wait, this is exactly WTF is going on. Don’t believe it? Just wait. I’m betting many actual prosecutors in the US find it hard to believe you can do this little in the way of prosecuting and still be employed.

  5. AbensonKC says:

    Garland probably thinks the political blowback for shutting Durham down is not worth suffering since Durham’s effort is going nowhere significant. Sorry Sussman, you’re collateral damage that is unavoidable because the crazies are just that crazy.

    • Badger Robert says:

      Garland;’s move is to press for a trial or dismissal while Biden still holds the pardon power.

      • Yargelsnogger says:

        Even if it ends up there is anything to pardon, why do you think Biden would be looking to pardon anyone in these matters. If they truly are found to have lied to the FBI by a jury, I don’t see how pardoning them benefits Biden or is appropriate. Unless the trial is an obvious farce of some sort, like all the jurors run out of the courtroom after the verdict trailing Trump 2020 signs and screaming “F___ all Democrats” I really have a hard time seeing any pardons in play here.

        It seems like Garland has a pretty good “move” in just waiting for Durham to embarass himself by having all his prosecutions fail.

  6. Peterr says:

    Durham is looking at the 70th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth’s ascension to the throne and saying to himself “OK, maybe 70 years is beyond what I can do, but surely I can stretch out my work here.”

    • P J Evans says:

      She could retire at any time. (She could have retired years ago, for that matter.) She’s done her job: children and grandchildren, at least some of whom seem to be good people.

      • Hika says:

        I think it is sweet of Queen Elizabeth to be shielding her heirs and successors from the burden of weekly meetings with the recent Prime Minister(s) of the UK. No parent should willingly expose their children to such awfulness.

  7. timbo says:

    Thanks for keeping the heat on this bozo. Hopefully there’s evidence he’s done something that warrants disbarment of censorship by the courts for this sort of half-assed case making.

  8. What Constitution? says:

    On the plus side, having reached 1000 days about this guy Durham, it’s great that EW has finally lost the will to continue using only that goofy “wanna watch me strain my soup wit dis mustache” photo each time. Thank god for small favors, huh? Keep up the good work!

  9. Fark Melt says:

    Today is more significant. It marks the expiration of the SOL for the second meeting with “another US Government Agency” at which Sussmann is alleged to have lied about who his client was. The meeting is alleged by Durham to have occurred on Feb 9, 2017.

    The only other apparent ghost that Durham could be chasing, I suppose, is if he thinks he can conjure up a Crime-Fraud exception.

    • bmaz says:

      By most all legal time calculations, that means it expired at midnight on the 8th. Though seems irrelevant at this point.

      • Fark Melt says:

        Well, not to the group of people that Durham chose to smear in his far-ranging indictment of Sussmann – they’ve surely been living in fear of him filing a superseding indictment that dragged them in. Of course, as I mentioned, they’re still going to have to hope that Durham doesn’t try CF allegations. I wonder how far Garland’s apparent weakness is going to let this nonsense go? It is certainly feeding the twitter trolls.

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