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U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland defended the Justice Department against continuing criticism that it’s mishandling its investigation of the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. Critics have argued the its probe is too slow and may allow some to escape accountability, including perhaps, former President Donald Trump.
Watch Garland’s remarks in the player above.
“This is the most wide ranging investigation, and the most important investigation that the Justice Department has ever entered into. And we have done so because this effort to upend a legitimate election, transferring power from one administration to another cuts at the fundamental of American democracy,” Garland said. “We have to get this right.”
Garland insisted, as he has in the past, that no one is above the law.
“We have to hold accountable every person who is criminally responsible for trying to overturn a legitimate election,” he said. “And we must do it in a way filled with integrity and professionalism.”
READ MORE: How to watch the Jan. 6 hearings
Earlier in the briefing, Garland said the Justice Department will seek to dismiss the Texas lawsuit against the Biden administration over federal rules requiring hospitals to provide abortions if the procedure is necessary to save a mother’s life.
The lawsuit, which names the Department of Health and Human Services and Secretary Xavier Becerra among its defendants, says the guidance previously issued by the Biden administration is unlawful, and that the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act does not cover abortions.
“We are going to enforce federal law here,” Garland told reporters Wednesday
“That act requires hospitals to provide stabilizing care for a patient who comes in with a medical emergency that seriously jeopardizes their life or their health.”
In a recent letter to providers, the Department of Health and Human Services said medical facilities are required to determine whether a person seeking treatment may be in labor or whether they face an emergency health situation — or one that could develop into an emergency — and to provide treatment. The letter says if abortion is the necessary treatment to stabilize the patient, it must be done.
However, when Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced the lawsuit, he said the federal government isn’t authorized to require emergency healthcare providers to perform abortions.
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