Ethics Complaint From Rep Stefanik Hinders Jack Smith

( — House Republican conference chair Elise Stefanik filed an ethics complaint with the DOJ’s Office of Professional Responsibility on Tuesday, accusing special counsel Jack Smith of attempting to “unlawfully interfere” with the presidential election.

Stefanik, who in November filed an ethics complaint against Judge Arthur Engoron, the judge in Trump’s civil fraud trial, argued that Smith was trying to “rush” the trial into Trump’s alleged interference with the 2020 presidential election.

Stefanik said in a statement that any “reasonable observer” would conclude that the special counsel was attempting to interfere with the election by preventing voters from electing Trump.

The New York Republican who was being considered as a possible running mate to Trump accused Smith of seeking to “accelerate his illegal prosecution” of the former president to ensure the trial took place before the general election.

Stefanik wants Smith censured for violating Justice Department policies that prevent prosecutors from selecting “the timing of any action” to affect an election.

She claimed that the special counsel’s conduct “brought disrepute” to the Justice Department and the federal government as a whole and urged the Office of Professional Responsibility to “impose the discipline that such conduct warrants.”

The ethics complaint is unlikely to cause any problems for the special counsel.

While there is no written policy, the Department of Justice does encourage prosecutors to avoid taking action within 60 days of an election if it might influence the outcome.

In a March filing in the federal classified documents case, prosecutors from the special counsel’s office told Judge Aileen Cannon that holding the trial in the days before the November election would not violate the DOJ’s 60-day rule, arguing that the provision did not apply to cases that were already charged and being litigated.

In December, Stefanik requested an ethics investigation into District Judge Beryl Howell, who has overseen multiple cases involving January 6 defendants, accusing her of making partisan statements and alleging election interference.

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