Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) has said that he is disputing one claim made by special counsel John Durham in his case against a former Hillary Clinton campaign lawyer who was charged last year with lying to the FBI.
Michael Sussmann, who had worked for the Clinton campaign-hired Perkins Coie lawyer, was charged by Durham’s team with making a false statement to the FBI when he met with then-General Counsel James Baker in 2016, telling Baker that he didn’t represent any client. While Sussmann has denied Durham’s allegations and pleaded not guilty, Durham said that Sussmann had told the FBI that he wasn’t working for Clinton’s campaign when he was billing the campaign for his work.
During an April 29 interview, Jordan told Just The News that his “only concern” regarding Durham’s investigation is when the special prosecutor said that “he doesn’t think the FBI knew who Sussmann was representing, but I just find that hard to believe.”
“Sussmann’s false statement misled the FBI General Counsel and other FBI personnel concerning the political nature of his work and deprived the FBI of information that might have permitted it more fully to assess and uncover the origins of the relevant data and technical analysis, including the identities and motivations of Sussmann’s clients,” Durham’s indictment stated. Sussmann’s trial is slated to start this month.
But Jordan, who is the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee and a lead House investigator into the Trump-Russia conspiracy theory, told the outlet that Baker was “actually friends with Sussmann,” citing that an email in the case revealed as much.
The congressman was referring to an email sent by Sussmann to Baker that was cited in Durham’s court filings, which read: “Jim — it’s Michael Sussmann. I have something time-sensitive (and sensitive) I need to discuss … Do you have [availability] for a short meeting tomorrow? I’m coming on my own — not on behalf of a client or company — want to help the Bureau. Thanks.”
However, “everything else” in Durham’s probe appears to be “encouraging, to see that he’s digging into this and getting to the bottom of it,” said Jordan. He added that some of the findings are what “we all suspected all along” and said the Democrats were pushing one of Sussmann’s alleged claims that there was a secret backchannel between the Trump Organization and a Russian bank.
Last week, the 2016 Clinton campaign sought to block Durham’s access to documents in connection to the case against the former Democratic Party-hired lawyer.