Two DOJ watchdog entities will battle over who gets to investigate John Durham for corruption probe
Official portrait.

New York Times reporter Charlie Savage was on the team of reporters that broke the recent report that special counsel John Durham and Attorney General Bill Barr were corruptly using the Justice Department in an attempt to discredit Robert Mueller's investigation. The effort failed, but only after nearly four years and $6.5 million in taxpayer dollars.

Two former prosecutors, now serving in Congress, have asked the inspector general at the DOJ to begin a probe into the conspiracy, but there's another entity under the department that could also be jockeying for the investigation: OPR - the Office of Professional Responsibility. OPR was started after Watergate in an effort to ensure the ethical standards of lawyers working under the DOJ.

Savage told MSNBC's Nicolle Wallace that the investigation would likely look at the draft of the interim report ahead of Durham's "No. 2" in the probe that ultimately quit.

"They would want to know more about how Durham used a grand jury authority to obtain access to the e-mails of George Soros' aide after a federal judge twice ruled his evidentiary basis for trying to get after that information about those e-mails and intrude on that person's privacy was legally inadequate. So, that would be two big avenues of discussion, as well as, what was this criminal investigation involving some sort of financial crime linked to Trump. Did they pursue it? How did they pursue it? What happened to that? Charges were never brought."

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Wallace said that for years she's wondered "why they do it," meaning people who had respectable reputations are willing to compromise themselves for Donald Trump. She also pointed out that Inspector General Michael Horowitz allowed a statement to go out from Durham that contradicted the Justice Department. It led her to wonder if there is a higher place for accountability.

Former CIA Director John Brennan began by agreeing that the whole prob was "politically motivated" and had "a fair amount of unethical and professionally inappropriate activities." It included Barr's behavior of "kowtowing to Donald Trump."

"Charlie's reporting raises some serious questions about whether or not this misconduct might have risen to the level of criminal activity or needs to be investigated by DOJ," he said. "It's very unfortunate it's taken up so much time and money when it's clear that this was a witch hunt trying to disprove the assessment that was done by the intelligence community that Russia was trying to interfere in the 2016 presidential election on behalf of Donald Trump."

See the full conversation below or at the link here.

Investigating John Durham