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Quid Pro Quo Again? And Again? And Again?

Social Justice Policy Brief #37 | By: Maureen Darby-Serson | June 27th, 2022

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Trump denies explicitly tying U.S. military aid to demand for Ukrainian probe of Biden.

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Policy Summary

Over the past couple of weeks, the January 6th committee has been holding public hearings that have revealed several astonishing facts regarding the attack on the US Capital and events after the 2020 Presidential election. While there have been several cringeworthily revelations, one that has gathered attention from the most recent hearings was the appointment of Jeffrey Clark as acting Attorney General of the United States, Former President Donald Trump’s third acting Attorney General at the time. 

Mr. Clark was arguably given this appointment due to his willingness to investigate and prosecute false claims of election fraud and declare the 2020 election stolen from Donald Trump. Was this another case of quid pro quo by Donald Trump?

One of the first well known quid pro quo’s, in 2019, Donald Trump was accused of a quid pro quo when Ukraine asked for aid to fight off Russia and Trump offered to send aid if Ukraine investigated then presidential candidate Joe Biden. The US House of Representative considered this interfering in a presidential election and impeached Donald Trump. After the January 6th riots, they impeached him again. The Senate failed to fully impeach the Former President.

Policy Analysis

Several Department of Justice officials testified at the hearings to their disbelief that Jeffrey Clark was appointed as acting Attorney General due to his lack of background in criminal law and lack of trial experience. 

They also testified to their refusal to sign a letter written by Jeffrey Clark declaring the 2020 election a fraud and one that was stolen from Donald Trump, even after finding no evidence of widespread fraud that would have changed the outcome of the election. This was the letter that made Donald Trump want Jeffrey Clark as his acting Attorney General.


Jeffrey Clark Was Considered Unassuming. Then He Plotted With Trump.

Photo taken from: The New York Times

 A person who was willing to write and sign a letter stating that the election was stolen was the kind of person he wanted running the Department of Justice. So, Trump did just that. Should we add this to the list of quid pro quos? With all of the other revelations, this one may take a back seat but Trump may have to answer this question if he decides to run in 2024.

Engagement Resources​

Click or tap on resource URL to visit links where available 

January 6th Committee Hearings – https://january6th.house.gov/committee_activity

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