Rachael Rollins, a U.S. Attorney with strong ties to Democratic megadonor George Soros, is stepping down amidst controversy. Reports from federal investigators allege that she leaked detrimental information about a political candidate to a Boston Herald reporter, in an attempt to support an ally. She is also accused of subsequently lying about her actions to federal investigators.
The Office of Special Counsel and the DOJ inspector general detailed how Rollins breached the integrity of the primary election for Suffolk district attorney by favouring Ricardo Arroyo over Kevin Hayden, the Hill reported.
Special Counsel Henry Kerner in his report to President Joe Biden, highlighted the severity of Rollins's misconduct stating, "Ms. Rollins’s conduct in leaking non-public DOJ information constitutes an extraordinary abuse of her authority and threatens to erode public confidence in the integrity of federal law enforcement actions."
DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz's report was equally damning, noting Rollins's actions "violated federal regulations, numerous DOJ policies, her Ethics Agreement, and applicable law." He stated that Rollins's conduct was significantly below the standard of professionalism expected of any DOJ employee, especially a U.S. Attorney. While Horowitz recommended criminal prosecution for Rollins's alleged false statements, the DOJ decided against it.
The report alleges that Rollins leaked information, suggesting that Hayden was the subject of a federal criminal investigation during the primary. This apparent attempt to manipulate the primary election potentially violates the Hatch Act, a federal law outlining the political actions permissible for federal employees.
Rollins's resignation will be submitted to President Biden by the end of the week, according to her attorney, Michael Bromwich. Despite the controversy, he emphasized her pride in the accomplishments made during her 16-month tenure, particularly in the fields of gun violence and civil rights.
Republican Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR) delivered a scathing critique of Democratic senators for ignoring prior warnings from GOP lawmakers about the potential risks of confirming Rollins as a U.S. Attorney.