Report: Prosecutor Resigns From Durham Probe Citing Concerns About Political Pressure

on May 15, 2009 in Washington, DC.
WASHINGTON - MAY 15: Connecticut prosecutor Nora R. Dannehy gets into a cab as she leaves the Law offices of Patton & Boggs after interviewing Karl Rove May 15, 2009 in Washington, DC. Rove was interviewed by Da... WASHINGTON - MAY 15: Connecticut prosecutor Nora R. Dannehy gets into a cab as she leaves the Law offices of Patton & Boggs after interviewing Karl Rove May 15, 2009 in Washington, DC. Rove was interviewed by Dannehy as part of a criminal investigation into the firing of U.S. attorneys during the Bush Administration. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images) MORE LESS

There’s one less investigator investigating the investigators.

The Hartford Courant reports that Nora R. Dannehy resigned from the Durham investigation this week. That decision, the paper says, was at least partly motivated by alleged attempts at speeding up the investigation for political reasons by Attorney General Bill Barr.

The report cites colleagues of Dannehy’s, who told the paper that, in the Courant’s words, she “has been concerned in recent weeks by what she believed was pressure from Barr — who appointed Durham — to produce results before the election.”

Citing the same anonymous colleagues, the paper also reports that Dannehy has been considering resignation in recent weeks amid “concern about politics.”

The report offered few specifics about the reasons for Dannehy’s concerns. But it notes that other “Durham associates” believe that Barr has been pressuring him to produce some sort of result before the November election.

It also offers this fairly detailed insight into the life of a Durham investigation prosecutor, as it stands today:

Dannehy was told to expect an assignment of from six months to a year when she agreed to join Durham’s team in Washington, colleagues said. The work has taken far longer than expected, in part because of complications caused by the corona virus pandemic. In the meantime, team members — some of whom are current or former federal investigators or prosecutors with homes in Connecticut — have been working long hours in Washington under pressure to produce results, associates said.

TPM left a message at a phone number listed for Dannehy, and also emailed a spokesperson for Attorney General Barr about the Courant report. Neither have replied to the requests for comment.

But the report comes amid unprecedented politicization of the Justice Department. The DOJ has shown extreme leniency towards friends of the President, asking for a lighter-than-first-recommended sentence for Roger Stone and dropping charges against Michael Flynn, after the former National Security Adviser had already pleaded guilty then withdrew his plea to those charges.

Dannehy is a former U.S. Attorney for Connecticut, and was appointed in 2008 to investigate the firings of U.S. Attorneys under the Bush administration.

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