An organization against the Republican Party's investigations into President Joe Biden and his family is asking a Kentucky commonwealth's attorney to investigate U.S. Rep. James Comer, the head of the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability.
The Louisville Courier Journal was the first to report on the organization's request in an article published Thursday afternoon.
The accusations center on emails the group says Comer unlawfully obtained and then leaked during the 2015 Republican primary for governor in an effort to discredit a blogger and a rival candidate. A spokesman for Comer says the allegations are "baseless" and "false."
The group, a 501(c)(4) organization called the Congressional Integrity Project, is asking Fayette County Commonwealth's Attorney Kimberly Henderson Baird to investigate the allegation that Comer unlawfully obtained and then leaked emails stolen from the computer server of a law firm during his unsuccessful bid for governor in 2015.
In a profile of Comer published Tuesday, The New York Times reports that, during the 2015 Kentucky primary for governor, Lexington blogger and attorney Mike Adams published allegations that Comer had abused a girlfriend while he was in college. The Times reports that The Lexington Herald-Leader published a story a month before the primary containing leaked emails suggesting "coordination between the blogger and the husband of the running mate of one of Mr. Comer’s opponents in the race, the Louisville developer Hal Heiner."
The Times reports that, in an interview with the newspaper, Comer "confirmed, for the first time" that he was behind the leak and "strongly hinted" that he got those emails from the computer server of the husband’s former law firm.
“I’ve had two servers in my lifetime,” Comer told the New York Times. “Hunter Biden’s is one, and you can — I’m not going to say who the other one was, but you can use your imagination.” The congressman added: “It ended up in my lap ... I’ll put it like that.”
In its letter to Baird, the Congressional Integrity Project says the emails were stolen from the Lexington law firm of Hurt, Deckard and May PLLC, formerly known as Hurt, Crosbie and May PLLC. The Louisville Courier Journal reports that the emails from the 2015 Herald-Leader story were those of Scott Crosbie, who no longer works at that law firm.
"It is a felony offense to unlawfully access any 'computer software, computer program, data, computer, computer system, computer network, or any part thereof,'" the letter states, citing Kentucky Revised Statute 434.845, and that "Misuse of computer information is also a felony. KRS 434.855."
The group claims: "There is more than sufficient evidence to initiate a criminal investigation into Representative Comer’s involvement in obtaining or receiving emails that appear to have been unlawfully obtained from a computer server owned by a Lexington law firm."
Referring to the New York Times article, the group claims: "At the very least, it now appears that Representative Comer has admitted that he knowingly received—and then used, distributed, and leaked for his own political gain—emails that he knew to be unlawfully obtained, in violation of KRS 434.855. That Representative Comer waited eight years to admit his involvement is no barrier to investigation and—should the investigation confirm what now appears to be true from his own public statements—ultimately, prosecution. As you are aware, there is no statute of limitations for a felony prosecution in Kentucky. KRS 500.050."
Local 6 reached out to Comer's communications director, Austin Hacker about the accusations. Hacker replied with an official statement that reads: "The allegations against Congressman Comer are baseless, false, and a cheap political stunt. The Congressional Integrity Project is a dark money, left-wing funded group whose sole mission is to smear Republicans conducting oversight of the Biden Administration."
When Local 6 asked Hacker if he could comment specifically on the claim that Comer was involved with the leak of the emails allegedly stolen from the law firm's server, Hacker replied, "Congressman Comer did not leak emails or hack any server."
Download the document below to read the Congressional Integrity Project's leader to Fayette County Commonwealth's Attorney Kimberly Henderson Baird.