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Attorney General Merrick Garland during a June news conference at the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C. Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Attorney General Merrick Garland issued a memo Wednesday designed to prevent political interference from the White House on Department of Justice matters.

Why it matters: The highly anticipated directive follows allegations of political interference during the previous administration, when former President Trump broke with convention to push the DOJ to investigate those he felt had scorned him while advocating for allies during investigations.

What he's saying: "The success of the Department of Justice depends upon the trust of the American people," Garland wrote in the memo, first obtained by USA Today.

  • "That trust must be earned every day, and we can do so only through our adherence to the long-standing departmental norms of independence from inappropriate influences, the principled exercise of discretion and the treatment of like cases alike."

Of note: Garland announced new guidelines Monday limiting DOJ and FBI investigators from seizing materials from reporters and news outlets except in extreme cases.

  • This policy follows disclosures that the DOJ, under the Trump administration, secretly obtained records of journalists from CNN, the Washington Post and the New York Times.

Read the full memo, via DocumentCloud:

Go deeper

Trump DOJ tried to seize WashPost journalists' records over Russia leaks

Then-Attorney General Bill Barr during a Dec. 21 news conference at the Department of Justice in Washington, DC. Photo: Michael Reynolds-Pool/Getty Images

The Trump Department of Justice attempted to obtain the communications records of three Washington Post reporters via legal action over 2017 reports on Russian election interference and Russia's ambassador, court documents unsealed Tuesday show.

Why it matters: The court order was lodged in secret the day before Bill Barr stepped down as attorney general last December.

Updated 8 mins ago - Sports

Simone Biles pulls out of team finals to focus on mental health

Photo: Tom Weller/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles pulled out of the women's gymnastics team finals on Tuesday to prioritize her mental health and well-being.

The latest: "At the end of the day, I have to do what's right for me and focus on my mental health, and not jeopardize my health and well-being," Biles told reporters in Tokyo. "That's why I decided to kind of take a step back and let them do their work, and they did it.

Capitol Police officer slams Trump for false claims about Jan. 6 rioters

Capitol Police Sgt. Aquilino Gonell condemned former President Trump's false claims that the Jan. 6 rioters were "hugging and kissing" officers when they invaded the Capitol, calling it a "pathetic excuse" for the fact that he "helped to create this monstrosity.

Why it matters: Gonell is one of four police officers who testified at the first hearing of the Jan. 6 select committee on Tuesday. He recounted the surgery he was forced to undergo due to injuries sustained from the attack, and described how that day made him "more afraid" than his entire U.S. Army deployment to Iraq.