How do you solve a problem like The Donald?
Officials at the department believe that the conservatives have now gone too far with document requests related to continuing investigations that the lawmakers clearly do not support, including the inquiry led by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, into Russia’s election interference. A former federal law enforcement official familiar with the department’s views said that Mr. Rosenstein and top F.B.I. officials have come to suspect that some lawmakers were using their oversight authority to gain intelligence about that investigation so that it could be shared with the White House.
After Nunes, you’d think they would take that as a given.
Mr. Trump’s threat on Wednesday to intervene bolstered those voices and could undermine the Justice Department’s ability to protect some of its most closely held secrets. Lawmakers conducting oversight are usually given summaries of the information, but not the intelligence collected directly from wiretaps and sensitive sources.
[…] “The department recognizes the keen interest that Congress has in the special counsel’s investigation, but, respectfully, we must adhere to the longstanding position of the department that congressional inquiries pertaining to ongoing criminal investigations threaten the integrity of those investigations,” Stephen E. Boyd, an assistant attorney general, wrote in the letter, a copy of which was provided to The New York Times…
“If we were to just open our doors to allow Congress to come and rummage through the files, that would be a serious infringement on the separation of powers,” Mr. Rosenstein said at an event in Washington. “It might resolve a dispute today, but it would have negative repercussions in the long run, and we have a responsibility to defend the institution.”