When it was announced that Attorney General Merrick Garland would be giving a speech about the January 6th Capitol attack, we knew that no matter what he said, it wouldn’t be enough to satisfy those who have been demanding that he wave a magic wand and cause Donald Trump and certain House Republicans to fall through a trap door. But Garland’s speech today made clear that his DOJ is indeed targeting everyone involved with the January 6th attack.
Garland stressed today that the DOJ will bring to justice everyone who was involved in January 6th “at any level,” whether they were physically involved in the attack or not, including everyone who was “criminally responsible” for the attack – a clear reference to the biggest fish involved.
Garland also explained what Palmer Report has been spelling out all along: many of the earliest prison sentences handed down were lenient because those were the most straightforward cases against peripheral players who only broke minor laws. As the more complicated cases against the more serious attackers are now finally reaching the sentencing stage, we’re now seeing several-year prison sentences being handed out or not.
Garland was never going to use this speech to identify specific high profile investigation targets by name; that’s simply not how ongoing DOJ probes are properly handled. But Garland just staked himself and his DOJ to taking their January 6th probe all the way to the top. Of course that requires working their way up from the bottom and flipping people as they go. It’ll take more time than anyone would like, and of course the doomsday pundits will continue to insist that Garland is doing “nothing.” But Garland just made clear that this is very much not the case.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report