Greenlighted Lois Lerner

New Trump Prosecutor Tied To IRS Scandal
WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 05:  Former Internal Revenue Service official Lois Lerner (C) exercises her Fifth Amendment right not to speak about the IRS targeting investigation before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee during a hearing in the Rayburn House Office Building March 5, 2014 in Washington, DC. Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) adjuourned after Lerner refused to answer questions about the investigation.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

At a glance

  • The special counsel named by the Biden administration to investigate Donald Trump oversaw a Justice Department unit rebuked by the Supreme Court for its prosecution of a prominent Republican and was linked by Congress to the IRS scandal that targeted conservative groups.
  • Jack Smith, a war crimes prosecutor in The Hague and former chief of the DOJ public integrity section, was named Friday by Attorney General Merrick Garland to take over two investigations of Trump related to Jan. 6 and classified documents found at Mar-a-Lago.

    In 2014, the House Oversight Committee concluded that during Smith’s earlier stint at DOJ he set up a critical meeting between his department and IRS official Lois Lerner that set in motion the targeting of conservative nonprofits that became one of the signature scandals of the Obama administration.

    His section also proceeded with the prosecution of then-Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, securing a jury conviction on 11 felony counts alleging the GOP governor’s family accepted gifts in return for official public acts.

    But the Supreme Court reversed the conviction in a stunning loss for DOJ, concluding that the definition of public acts used by Smith’s team was unconstitutional and exceeded the definition in the bribery statutes.

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