Apple Surrendered Former White House Counsel Don McGahn’s Account Information to Trump DOJ
The Trump administration might be over, but its ability to generate controversy continues. On Sunday, The New York Times reported that in February 2018 the Department of Justice (DOJ) subpoenaed Apple for the account information of former Trump White House Counsel Don McGahn and his wife.
The company complied with the subpoena, according to anonymous sources who spoke with the Times. A nondisclosure order prevented it from notifying the McGahns about the request until May of this year.
This news comes on the heels of revelations last week that the DOJ under former President Donald Trump had subpoenaed Apple and Microsoft for the account information of journalists and Democratic lawmakers as part of a leak investigation.
Targets of these subpoenas included Reps. Eric Swalwell (D–Calif.) and Adam Schiff (D–Calif.) as well as reporters at CNN, the Times, and The Washington Post.
Apple spokesperson Fred Sainz said in a statement to the Post on Friday that the DOJ had asked the company to cough up subscriber information for 73 phone numbers and 36 email addresses. Sainz said that Apple had no knowledge of the nature of the investigation and that it only turned over subscriber information, and not pictures or the content of emails.
Microsoft also told the Post it had handed over subscriber information for an unnamed congressional staffer in response to a DOJ subpoena.
Democrats have expressed outrage at the subpoenas.”President Trump repeatedly and flagrantly demanded that the Department of Justice carry out his political will and tried to use the Department as a cudgel against his political opponents and members of the media. It is increasingly apparent that those demands did not fall on deaf ears,” Schiff said to Vox in a statement.
Schiff stoked controversy in 2019 when he included Rep. Devin Nunes’ (R–Calif.) phone records in an Intelligence Committee report on Trump’s impeachment.
DOJ Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz has said that he will probe whether these requests for lawmakers’ and reporters’ records violated the department’s policies and if the underlying investigation was “based upon improper considerations.”
U.S Attorney General Merrick Garland will meet with the heads of media outlets today to discuss these subpoenas. The DOJ also announced Saturday that it will stop secretly collecting journalists’ records. Press freedom groups praised that policy change while also demanding more details on its specifics.
Rep. Joaquin Castro’s (D–Texas) latest crusade is to increase Hispanic representation on the silver screen, and he’s willing to play hardball with the entertainment industry to get the job done. In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, he said state lawmakers should require film studios’ casts and crews to be more representative of state populations as a
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