Blistering DOJ watchdog report reveals why Biden-nominated US Attorney Rollins is resigning

Massachusetts U.S. Attorney Rachael Rollins is planning to resign after a lengthy investigation by the Department of Justice into her alleged misconduct found that she unethically attended a partisan Biden fundraiser last summer and “falsely testified under oath” about leaking “sensitive DOJ” information to the press in an effort to help a Democrat win elected office. Details of Rollins’ misconduct – highlighted in the report released Wednesday by DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s office – showed that Rollins attempted to swing an election by assisting “Ricardo Arroyo with his Democratic primary campaign for Suffolk D.A.” Rollins, according to the report, went so far as to offer Arroyo advice on how to handle the sexual assault allegations levied against him during his campaign and also provided media outlets with “negative information” about his challenger, Kevin Hayden. “Rollins’s efforts to advance Arroyo’s candidacy included providing negative information about Hayden to The Boston Globe and suggesting where the Globe could look to find more information,” the report stated. “The evidence demonstrated that at a critical stage of the primary race, Rollins brought her efforts to advance Arroyo’s candidacy to the MA USAO, when she used her position as U.S. Attorney, and information available to her as U.S. Attorney, in an ultimately unsuccessful effort to create the impression publicly, before the primary election, that DOJ was or would be investigating Hayden for public corruption.” MASSACHUSETTS US ATTORNEY RACHAEL ROLLINS TO RESIGN AFTER DOJ WATCHDOG PROBE INTO DEM FUNDRAISER ATTENDANCE The efforts, the report noted, included Rollins “trying unsuccessfully to convince her First Assistant U.S. Attorney to issue a letter that would have created the impression that DOJ was investigating Hayden and, when that effort failed, disclosing non-public, sensitive DOJ information directly to a Herald reporter before the primary election.” “Then, after the Herald did not publish the story before the primary election and Arroyo lost to Hayden, Rollins disclosed additional information to the Herald to damage Hayden’s reputation while he was an uncontested candidate in the general election,” the DOJ report stated. The Justice Department also concluded that Rollins “falsely testified under oath during her OIG interview when she denied that she was the federal law enforcement source that provided nonpublic, sensitive DOJ information to the Herald reporter about a possible Hayden criminal investigation.” Rollins later admitted to being the source after she “produced relevant text messages, which definitively showed that Rollins had indeed been a source for the reporter and had disclosed to him the internal DOJ recusal memorandum quoted in the story,” the report said. In addition to providing the press with sensitive information about Arroyo’s challenger, Rollins helped Arroyo last summer with a response to sexual assault allegations he faced on the campaign trail. BIDEN-NOMINATED US ATTORNEY RACHAEL ROLLINS UNDER DOJ IG INVESTIGATION “In late August, Rollins provided advice to Arroyo concerning a story published in the Globe on August 23, 2022, about allegations against Arroyo of sexual assault dating back to 2005 and 2007. On August 22, the day before the story broke, Rollins gave Arroyo feedback on his draft answers to the Globe reporter’s questions and told Arroyo in a text message: ‘Ask [the reporter] to call me about the sexual assault suspect question. I will answer off the record.’ Arroyo replied to Rollins that he would tell the reporter to contact Rollins, and Rollins then suggested that Arroyo tell the reporter to contact ‘some previous DAs’ as well. The next day, August 23, Arroyo sent Rollins a draft public statement about the sexual assault allegations and asked for Rollins’s feedback. Rollins responded the same day with significant edits and additions to Arroyo’s statement and told him to ‘[p]roofread and spellcheck.’ Rollins then advised Arroyo: ‘Just make sure what you say is accurate.’” The report also found that Rollins, despite ethics advice not to, attended a fundraiser for President Biden last summer that included an appearance by first lady Jill Biden. “Based on Rollins’s own account of what she did after she arrived at the fundraiser location, Rollins went inside the home, mingled with the guests, and stood in the same receiving line as the other fundraiser guests to meet Dr. Biden,” the report noted. “Rollins’s interaction with Dr. Biden was identical to those of the other fundraiser guests whose primary purpose for being at the event was to get in line and meet Dr. Biden. She also posed for photos with the event hosts and guests, as well as a U.S. Senator, after meeting Dr. Biden and before leaving the event. Rollins told us that she believed she had complied with what she understood was the ethics advice. As described in this report, the facts do not support Rollins’s claim.” The DOJ concluded that Rollins “attended a partisan political fundraiser without approval from the Deputy Attorney General, or her designee, as required by Department policy, and her attendance was contrary to the ethics advice she received before the event that gave permission for Rollins to meet and greet with Dr. Biden separately from the fundraiser but did not include approval from the Deputy Attorney General, or her designee, to attend the fundraiser itself.” “We also found Rollins’s efforts to blame her staff for her own ethics failures deeply disturbing and contrary to her own independent responsibility as U.S. Attorney to hold herself to a high ethical standard and exercise sound judgment,” the report added. Rollins was sworn in as Massachusetts’ top federal law enforcement officer in January 2022, after serving as the district attorney for Boston and surrounding communities. Rollins and her team were overseeing the investigation into Jack Teixeira, the Massachusetts Air National Guardsman who is accused of leaking intelligence documents over Discord. The inspector general’s office opened an investigation into Rollins last November, over her appearance at the Democratic National Committee fundraiser featuring the first lady. The report also highlights wrongdoing by Rollins over the use of her personal cellphone to conduct Justice Department business and a trip she took to California that was paid for by an outside group. Fox News’ Bradford Betz, Timothy H.J. Nerozzi and The Associated Press contributed to this article.
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