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Trump-era DOJ official Jeffrey Clark's home searched by law enforcement

DOJ officials: Trump pressed to overturn election
DOJ officials: Trump pressed agency to overturn election 03:57

CBS News has learned that law enforcement authorities have searched the home of former Trump-era Justice Department official Jeffrey Clark, who was a particular focus of the House Jan. 6 committee hearing on Thursday. 

Clark is believed to be central to the efforts of then-President Donald Trump and his allies to delay the certification of the 2020 election results and promote baseless claims that Joe Biden had not legitimately won the election. 

Clark was in contact with Trump in the days leading up to Jan. 6, 2021, according to an October Senate Judiciary committee report, and Trump considered installing Clark as his acting attorney general as other top Justice Department officials refused to support his unsubstantiated claims of mass voter fraud, former DOJ official Richard Donoghue told the House select committee.

The D.C. U.S. Attorney's Office confirmed to CBS News there was law enforcement activity Wednesday in the area where Clark's house is, but added that they do not comment on or discuss the nature of law enforcement activity. 

Capitol Riot Investigation Trump Justice Official
Jeffrey Clark, then-Assistant Attorney General for the Environment and Natural Resources Division, speaks during a news conference at the Justice Department in Washington, on Sept. 14, 2020.  Susan Walsh / AP

ABC News first reported the search of Clark's home.

Russ Vought, a top Office of Management and Budget official under Trump who now works with Clark, tweeted that Clark was put out in the streets in his pajamas. 

"The new era of criminalizing politics is worsening in the US. Yesterday more than a dozen DOJ law enforcement officials searched Jeff Clark's house in a pre dawn raid, put him in the streets in his pjs, and took his electronic devices," Vought tweeted. "All because Jeff saw fit to investigate voter fraud. This is not America, folks. The weaponization of govt must end. Let me be very clear. We stand by Jeff and so must all patriots in this country."

The search came just one day before the House Jan. 6 committee hearing zeroed in on Trump's efforts to install Clark at the helm of the Justice Department while the former president relentlessly pushed the DOJ to investigate baseless claims of election fraud. The White House even circulated a memo on Jan. 3, 2021, calling Clark the attorney general. 

Former acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen described how Clark told him one Sunday in a one-on-one meeting that he would be replacing him as acting attorney general. Rosen said Clark offered to have Rosen stay on as his deputy. 

"I thought that was preposterous," Rosen testified Thursday. "I told him that was nonsensical." 

Clark said he wouldn't take the helm at the Justice Department if Rosen signed onto a letter calling into question the integrity of the election results. Rosen said he and Donoghue had consistently said they would not sign the letter. 

Donoghue held a meeting with all but one of the department's assistant attorney generals — one was unable to make the call — and the assistant AGs all said they would resign if Clark took the helm at the Justice Department. 

"All without hesitation said they would resign," Donoghue testified. 

Jan. 6 committee member Rep. Adam Kinzinger said Clark had invoked the Fifth Amendment 125 times when he spoke to the committee. 

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