Lisa Monaco Vows, Again, to Hold All January 6 Perpetrators, at Any Level, Accountable

In a press conference releasing DOJ’s FY 2023 budget ask, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco was asked about the January 6 investigation. She vowed, as Merrick Garland has before, to hold perpetrators — at any level — accountable.

So, look, as we have described, the January 6 investigation is among the most wide-ranging, the most complex that this department has ever undertaken. It reaches nearly every US Attorney’s Office, nearly every FBI field office, we’ve charged more than 750 cases and we’ve charged unprecedented conspiracies and the use of rare tools like the seditious conspiracy statute. Regardless of whatever resources we seek, or get, let’s be very, very clear, we are going to continue to do those cases, we are going to hold those perpetrators accountable, no matter where the facts lead us, as the Attorney General has said, no matter what level.

We will do those cases.

But, again, let’s be clear: Doing those cases draws on resources from across the US Attorneys offices, those same resources that are needed to fight violent crime. Those same resources that are needed to investigate corporate crime across the country. Those same resources that are going to help us enforce our civil rights laws.

So this budget, the FY 23 budget would provide as I noted an unprecedented level of funding to our law enforcement components, to US attorneys offices, to really recognize the priority that we’re placing both on the January 6 investigations and all the US Attorneys, all the priorities that the US Attorneys offices have to face in addition.

59 replies
  1. John Forde says:

    Indictments (& arrests) will come like a thunderbolt.
    DOJ must be deconflicting with J6.
    That gives DOJ visibility into the public hearings.
    When shocking facts are announced might DOJ strike the next morning?

    • Al Ostello says:

      More likely many months after hearings based on Watergate timeline:

      June 1972: Watergate break in
      May-Nov 1973: Public hearings
      March 1974: Indictments
      January 1975: Dozens of convictions

      • Rayne says:

        In the Watergate investigation they didn’t have +1000 perps nor terabytes of digital evidence through which to comb.

        • Charles Wolf says:

          They also lacked search engines to go through the mountains of Tape and Paper evidence.
          Humans actually had to do the grunt work of reading and listening to all that, and discovery via Xerox machines and 18 wheelers, instead of on thumb drives.

          • Rayne says:

            LOL One perp’s office tape recorder versus +1000 smartphones, email accounts, social media accounts, photos and video from phones and security cameras, cell phone companies’ logs, server logs, so on, and many of them continuing to accrue content potentially related at the same time. There may be technology which can shorten much of the scanning but it can’t contextualize the search; much of the video and photos available to the public were analyzed by many volunteers and not paid DOJ or Congressional employees (thank you Sedition Track and Capitol Hunters for providing the free repositories).

            Give me the Nixon tapes and old-fashioned check registers for CREEP.

            • bmaz says:

              One question: Do you lawfully get all that evidence immediately because internet alarmists think you should, or naw gotta do it right? Is a rhetorical question, yes.

              • Rayne says:

                If it’s being turned in as a tip to the FBI? Why not. But we’re still looking at +1000 perps even with help from volunteers. There’s no getting around the fact it takes time not only to receive that much evidence but validating what volunteers offer.

                It’s still like drinking from a firehose.

    • Marinela says:

      Glad Lisa Monaco is in the deputy position.
      Her confidence, her knowledge and experience, the way she approaches the law enforcing…
      Aside from Trump/J6 investigations, interesting she mentioned corporate crimes. Reminded me about Joe Biden’s state of the union when he said there was fraud related to COVID. Plus you have the new task force that is intended to go after those who go around the sanctions. DOJ plate is full.

  2. John says:

    Emptywheel. You da best! Always giving out great info rather than punditry and hackneyed ‘Dems in disarray’ opinions. T

    [Welcome to emptywheel. Please use a more differentiated username when you comment next as we have several community members named ” John” or “Johnnie” or “Johnny.” Thanks. /~Rayne]

  3. Peterr says:

    It might help if the Senate were able to confirm nominees to be US Attorneys. According to the list at, of the 93 districts, 35 are being served by Senate-confirmed nominees, five are acting US attorneys, and 53 have US Attorneys appointed by Garland as interim USAs or USAs serving under the Vacancies Reform Act.

    Budget authority is nice and increased budget authority is nicer, but having less than half the districts being served by someone other than a Senate-confirmed US Attorney is not good at all.

  4. BobCon says:

    Joel Greenberg’s sentencing has been delayed again “to further advance aspects of pending investigations.”

    It’s commonly reported that this is related to Gaetz’s underage sex case, but Greenberg told Daily Beast last year he kept messages with Stone about a scheme to pay for pardon consideration at the end of Trump’s term. I doubt this delay is limited to the most widely reported Gaetz issues, although it’s always possible it’s something besides 1/6.

    • harpie says:

      After J6, STONE called the pardon push the “Stone Plan”:

      The Roger Stone Tapes Previously unseen documentary footage shows the long time Trump advisor working to overturn the 2020 election, and after the Jan. 6 riot, secure pardons for the former president’s supporters (“A Storm Foretold”)
      Bennett/Swain March 4, 2022

      I break that article down, here:

      • BobCon says:

        The $250K transfer to Stone referenced by the Daily Beast, if it happened, would coincide with the late December fundraising. The Greenberg confession letter to Stone implicating Gaetz could be useful for keeping Gaetz in line on the 6th.

        Although what’s public is possibly misleading and this is really about parochial Florida stuff. Maybe keeping things under wrap is just a head fake toward Stone. It’s curious though.

        • Leoghann says:

          I read articles in both the Miami and Tampa papers that said Greenberg’s trail has led to politicos and other “important people” all over Florida, not so much involving his sex scandal, but financial malfeasance and corruption. My guess is that we’ll know who it involves when there’s a big arrest party some early morning.

    • Frank says:

      Last time this went on this long, it was for Michael Flynn, and we all know how that turned out.

      Joel, like Flynn, is gaming the system, and they’re letting him do it. He’s holding back evidence a little at a time. Why don’t they demand he tell them everything, right now? They obviously have the leverage.

      • BobCon says:

        Right, it was inexcusable how Garland let Flynn do that and now he’s letting it happen again.

        Wait, my producer is saying in my earpiece that Bill Barr and Rosenstein were in charge when Flynn had his sentencing delayed. I regret the inaccuracy

        At any rate, Rick Gates pleaded guilty in February 2018, provided testimony that helped convict Manafort, and had his sentencing delayed due to ongoing cases for 21 more months. I wouldn’t assume anything now about Greenberg.

        It’s possible this is all a song and dance routine. But cooperation is more than just giving a full statement. It’s about providing ongoing responses to evidence as it is uncovered all through an investigation.

        No witness can possibly know every relevant thing to say until an investigation is over — they may be called on after a year to help poke holes in an alibi, for example.

    • dejavuagain says:

      “Holed” appears in the teaser text: “In a budget presser, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco repeated what Merrick Garland has already said: DOJ will holed perpetrators “

  5. Caliban says:


    The big news is that DOJ is ramping up their investigation on-

    Hunter Biden. Not Trump. HUNTER BIDEN.

    People keep saying this takes time, like Watergate. Well, Nixon resigned and Trump is running. Garland has until 23 and then Trump announces his campaign. At which point there is simply no way the DOJ touches Trump.

    [Welcome back to emptywheel. Please use the same username each time you comment so that community members get to know you. This is your third user name (Caliban, Bernie, and Makeitso) and your third email address. This is your one and only warning; over 18 comments to date you’ve tried to sockpuppet repeatedly. Thanks. /~Rayne]

    • P J Evans says:

      Citations needed. Also, it’s still early in 2022. Don’t jump off your bridges before you get to them.

    • Rayne says:

      Your amplification of right-wing propaganda and Russian active measures is so noted. Screaming about their bullshit only makes their bullshit rise to the surface.

      • Makeitso says:

        CNN is a Russian tool? Who knew?

        The Justice Department is ratcheting up its investigation into the business practices of President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, sources tell CNN, saying that there’s been an uptick in witnesses providing testimony to federal investigators.

        And the bs is already there. There is a short window to go after Trump before he runs for president. Denying the reality is foolish.

        • Rayne says:

          First, provide citations for your claims in the future.

          Second, don’t tell us or community members to “just Google it.” We expect better quality comments here.

          Third, how in the hell does regurgitating right-wing bullshit here where we are trying to offer better quality content help anyone? You’re DDoSing our threads with right-wing crap.

          Catch a clue — match the caliber of the rest of the community or find a different one.

    • Leoghann says:

      I’d like to see even one citation from a reliable source (not the Twitterverse) that says DOJ isn’t investigating Trump. Just one. It’s too bad your little feewings are hurt that the investigation into H Biden continues, but that doesn’t justify the line of whiny bullshit that you’ve spewed today.

  6. Tech Support says:

    I have to really question whether the recent prodding from the Ds on the J6 committee is performative or actually reflects a lack of faith in the things that Garland and Monaco are saying? I would tend to believe that former prosecutors on the committee (lookin at you Schiff) don’t need to have this explained to them.

    • Belyn says:

      I’d say at least partly performative, perhaps in good part performative.
      They are all running for re-election.
      They all know the value of constituent services, and some of their constituents are the impatient whingers.
      But they may indeed be impatient to some some degree.
      They all likely know a lot more about evidence, but not clear to me how much more they know about DOJs timeline.

      • BobCon says:

        Congressional committees are by nature about publicizing issues, and when done correctly, backing up their findings with exhaustive amounts of evidence.

        In recent years they’ve gone overwhelmingly to fly by night quick hits for publicity purposes BUT I think 1/6 has operated much more on the model of the old school pros like Carl Levin and John Dingell.

        Pelosi to her credit has given them far more funding and staff resources than typical investigations in recent years. She should have started this in January 2019, but it could have been much worse.

        Unfortunately, most of the press who understand how congressional committees can operate like they did in the 80s are gone. The current batch really have no clue. They still can’t get their heads around basic distinctions between prosecution and oversight, or understand how legislative branch and executive branch investigators can and cannot work together, and as a result what reporters communicate to the public is a hot steaming pile.

    • PieIsDamnGood says:

      My theory is that the DOJ and J6 committee are starting from different places in the organization chart and that is the source of disconnect.

      DOJ is starting at the bottom with rioters who breached the capital and moving up from there (fairly rapidly) as Marcy has written about extensively. J6 committee is starting much closer to Trump and expanding directly into the organizers/funders. The TV lawyers seem to expect DOJ to start at the same point as J6 committee and are complaining about there being no evidence of investigation when they’re looking in the wrong spot.

      I don’t know enough about how prosecutions work to say if the approach DOJ is taking is strictly necessary. I think DOJ wants to be able to say, “we were investigating the insurrectionists and just happened to find Trump at the center, no bias here!” as if that will prevent cries of “political witch-hunt”.

      Personally, I don’t have much faith that DOJ will make it all the way to Trump before the next election, but I’d love to be wrong.

      • bmaz says:

        Unfortunately, yes, it is, and should be necessary. Regardless of the “cries”, and there are relentlessly those, even here, that is how you, one and all should hope for the DOJ to function. The opposite is what people used to cry about.

        • PieIsDamnGood says:

          Isn’t Trump (+ conspirators) pressuring Pence to take an illegal action to obstruct the vote counting a crime all by itself? I don’t see how that individual crime needs to be linked to the J6 insurrection, given sufficient evidence.

          The most charitable interpretation of TV lawyer claims is they believe there is sufficient public evidence.

          • Rayne says:

            I’ve wondered whether picking one discrete crime to charge Trump with right now to watch how he tries to SLAPP it away would not only help produce evidence but prep the public for what’s to come. This particular alleged crime might be worthwhile if it could be partitioned in a way that kept it from bleeding into the rest of the overarching conspiracy investigation.

            But the call to Georgia’s Raffensperger and a GA state or county charge might do a better job of that.

        • CD54 says:

          Yes, absolutely. But juxtaposed against the Trump/Barr DOJ and the complete, so far, lack of consequences for bad faith and much worse.

          Without structural, unavoidable barriers to that it becomes an asymmetric political chump’s game — which Democratic leaders almost always fall for.

          • Leoghann says:

            Consequences come after indictments, arrests, and trials. I guess it bears repeating that this is real life, not Law & Order or NCIS.

          • earlofhuntingdon says:

            You mean the “structural, unavoidable barriers” that Trump, Barr, ad nauseum devoted an entire administration to tearing down? Those barriers?

    • Steve in MA says:

      I do wonder if some of the J6 Committee members are concerned about the upcoming election, and whether a lack of indictments or other visible actions by DOJ will hurt the Dems election chances. Also, if the Republicans regain the house, they will assuredly shut down the committee. Hence the urgency and the attempts to goose the DOJ into action. Unclear if it has any effect on the DOJ, but they are possibly trying to have some influence.

    • Christopher Rocco says:

      Wholly agree on that one. Schiff knows better, so why the bluster? The J6 committee and DOJ are working on the same thing, from different directions. The comments don’t make sense.

    • AKnow says:

      I think you have to look beyond the political (important as that might be to the Dems) and the performative in the case of every member on the committee regarding their attitude to DOJ speed and performance. This is the rare instance where the actions that happened that day were very much directed at them. This is deeply personal and we can’t forget that. Imagine if you had been in the same position. You would be angry and impatient in a way that might occasionally override your professional judgement.

  7. ApacheTrout says:

    Some observations on her call for increased staffing to ensure adequate prosecution of J6 AND regular criminal activities:

    1) The Biden admin damn well better go to the wall for that budget.
    2) She’d better be high-balling the staff numbers, in case the budget is negotiated downward, as…
    3) This gives the GOP a flank to attack Biden for being soft on crime by ignoring prosecution of regular crime in favor of political prosecution of J6. At the same time, the GOP can refuse to increase the budget as a way of cutting off prosecution of J6 perps.
    4) So the Biden admin and its allies damn well better go the wall for that budget.

  8. dejavuagain says:

    The teaser still states: “In a budget presser, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco repeated what Merrick Garland has already said: DOJ will holed perpetrators of the attack, at any level, accountable.” Still, is it true that Trump hit a hole in won?

    “holed perpetrators”

  9. surfer2099 says:

    “Those same resources that are needed to investigate corporate crime across the country.”

    I can’t stop laughing at this statement. Help. Please.

    DOJ is infamous at not prosecuting corporate crime. If it wasn’t for civil litigation, we’d have no justice at all when dealing with corporate America.

    • Christopher Rocco says:

      EW has pointed out relentlessly that an obstructionist like Meadows is worth more to the DOJ as a target in the criminal conspiracy investigation than as a defendant in an obstruction trial. If DOJ has probable cause, they can subpoena the rest of Meadows’ comms that he didn’t turn over to the J6 committee. Those are of greater value.

  10. John Herbison says:

    Encouraging words from Ms. Monaco. When I see indictments of Trump and his inner circle, I’ll believe them. Let’s hope it is sooner rather than later.

  11. Frank says:

    While I am squarely on Lisa’s (and the DOJ’s) side on this (I have to keep several friends from jumping off the ledge, weekly), the DOJ really needs to stress WHY they can’t publicly discuss every detail of their work. 70% of the American people want accountability for Jan6. Most of them are being extremely patient. But they need more than this.

    They need to know WHY they don’t know anything until the indictments are released. WE know why, but the general American public apparently doesn’t. The media knows why. But they continue to play dumb, and put undo pressure on the DOJ, which is just a sick game for them. None of them knew a thing about the Oath-keepers indictments until AFTER they were filed. None of us did. Neither did we even know about the empaneled grand jury used for that task.

    • bmaz says:

      No, they absolutely do NOT have to do that, and it would be not just inappropriate to do so, it would be strictly illegal under Rule 6. DOJ does not owe you, nor anybody else, a constant briefing on what they are doing. That is just a ludicrous assertion.

      And, by the way, you need to differentiate your name from just “Frank”. That is too common.

  12. Frank says:

    Also, this:

    [District Judge] Carter applies precedent [in his ruling] to show that “a person does not need to know their actions are wrong to break the law.” Trump exceeded this threshold because he likely knew that right-wing lawyer John Eastman’s plan to throw out electoral votes was illegal. Carter cites the January 6 House select committee’s carefully compiled evidence that Trump was advised publicly and privately numerous times that there was absolutely no evidence of significant electoral fraud.

    As the opinion notes, Trump’s calls to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in which he famously asked the secretary to “give (him) a break” and “find 11,780 votes” (one vote more than Biden’s margin of victory in that state) reveal the former President’s goal: not to undertake any legitimate investigation, but simply to overturn the election. This is strong evidence of a “corrupt mindset,” and it leads Carter to an eminently simple conclusion: “(t)he illegality of the plan was obvious.”

    But also, this:
    All we need to show mens rea of Trump is this: “Just say that the election was corrupt & leave the rest to me and the R. Congressmen.”  Said by president Donald Trump to Acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen on a phone call, Dec. 27th, 2020.  Acting Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue put it in his meeting notes.

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