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House Judiciary Panel Demands Rod Rosenstein Comply with Subpoena

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik
AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

The House Judiciary Committee approved a resolution on Tuesday demanding that in seven days, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein turn over all requested documents regarding the FBI’s handling of the Trump-Russia investigation or face potential impeachment or contempt.

The committee voted 15-11 on party lines to pass the resolution, which was authored by House Judiciary Committee members Reps. Mark Meadows (R-NC), Jim Jordan (R-OH), Matt Gaetz (R-FL), and Scott Perry (R-PA).

The move comes after the Justice Department and FBI refused to hand over all documents subpoenaed by lawmakers in March related to the FBI’s use of an unverified dossier to obtain a surveillance warrant on President Trump’s former campaign adviser, Carter Page, and potential bias in how it handled the Clinton email investigation and the Trump-Russia investigation.

Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) said turning over the documents was especially important after the DOJ Inspector General’s report that showed there was “rampant political bias by a number of key officials and individuals at the FBI.”

“The process of gaining access to these documents has been slow, to say the least, and has not to date been fully completed,” he said. “I would like to note that the Department should be aware that the committee is willing to use all means at our disposal to get complete compliance with our subpoena, including oversight hearings like the one that we are going to have on Thursday.”

Goodlatte said he intended to question Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Thursday about compliance with their subpoena and will encourage other members to do the same.

“We are sick and tired of the Department of Justice giving us the runaround,” Jordan added. “Every option is on the table.”

Democrats on the committee protested the resolution.

“What is really going on is a bad faith effort by members of the majority … to interfere with an ongoing criminal investigation being conducted by the FBI and the Department of Justice,” said Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY).

“It is disgraceful and a misuse of power,” he added and accused Republicans of colluding with foreign governments.

The resolution will now go to the House floor. House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) has expressed support for House lawmakers seeking documents.

If there is not full compliance, he told reporters Tuesday, “we will keep every single option available to us.”

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