Merrick Garland 'Failing the People' Over Donald Trump, Joaquin Castro Says

Texas Democratic congressman Joaquin Castro has accused Attorney General Merrick Garland of "failing" the country for not launching a criminal investigation into former President Donald Trump.

Speaking to CNN's Jim Acosta, Castro was asked for his reaction to an article in The New York Times which said, citing unnamed sources, that President Joe Biden is getting frustrated that Trump has not yet been prosecuted for his actions before, during or after the January 6 attack.

According to The Times, Biden still considers the former president a threat to democracy and told Garland privately that he wants him to act more like a prosecutor and less like a "ponderous judge" with regards to making decisions over the insurrection.

When asked by Acosta if he shares Biden's frustrations, Castro said: "Many people believe that Merrick Garland is a good person with a good heart with a good head on his shoulders. But so far Merrick Garland is failing the United States of America.

"How many crimes does somebody have to commit to get prosecuted in this country and at least get investigated by the Department of Justice?" Castro added.

"Whether it was the efforts to not allow for the certification of the election, putting pressure on election officials in Georgia, putting pressure on Mike Pence, the possible obstruction of justice, or at least worth an investigation about what happened in that gap where we can't find his phone calls?"

Castro also made reference to other investigations of Trump, including the joint criminal and civil probes in New York looking into allegations of tax fraud at the Trump Organization.

"You would think that the Department of Justice would take up at least one of those things. And it's just shocking at this point, that the Attorney General and the Department of Justice have failed this badly," the congressman said.

"Obviously Donald Trump is a clear threat to American democracy and for the Attorney General and for the Department of Justice to just sit there and do nothing while we watch this in real time, it's just shocking."

The comments from Castro arrived after members of the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 attack also expressed frustration at Garland for not moving as quickly as they would like with bringing criminal charges against those who refuse to comply with their subpoenas.

So far, the Department of Justice (DoJ) has only moved forward with charging former White House advisor Steve Bannon for contempt of Congress after he refused to comply with the subpoena issued against him. The department has still not made a decision on whether to charge Trump's former chief of staff Mark Meadows for also refusing to comply with his subpoena, despite being referred by the panel.

Speaking at a meeting where the panel announced they will be recommending contempt of congress charges against former White House trade adviser Peter Navarro and ex-Deputy Chief of Staff for Communications Dan Scavino, panel member Rep. Elaine Luria said: "The Department of Justice must act swiftly.

"I will echo what my colleagues have already said, but more bluntly, Attorney General Garland, do your job so that we can do ours."

There has been no indication from the DoJ on whether prosecutors are considering filing criminal charges against Trump.

In late March, U.S. District Judge David Carter ruled that Trump "more likely than not" committed a felony while attempting to block Congress certifying the 2020 Election results in favor of Biden.

While the announcement was made in a civil court relating to Trump's lawyer John Eastman attempting to withhold more than 100 documents from the January 6 panel, Neama Rahmani, former federal prosecutor and president of West Coast Trial Lawyers, told Newsweek that Carter's ruling may have a "political impact on swaying" Garland's future decision-making.

Also in March, the resignation letter from New York prosecutor Mark Pomerantz was made public in which he said that the former president was "guilty of numerous felony violations" with regards to his "false" financial statements.

Pomerantz added that it is a "grave failure of justice" that Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg suspended the tax fraud investigation into Trump without charging him with a crime.

The DoJ has been contacted for comment.

Joaquin Castro trump
Joaquin Castro, right, has accused Attorney General Merrick Garland, center, of "failing" the country for not launching a criminal case into Donald Trump, left. Drew Angerer/ Kevin Lamarque-Pool/ Drew Angerer/Getty Images