Knock, knock, you’s there – Trump

H.Con.Res.24 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)
Passed House (03/14/2019)

This concurrent resolution calls for the full release to Congress and the public release, as allowed by law, of any report (including findings) Special Counsel Mueller provides to the Department of Justice.

Whereas, on January 6, 2017, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence released a report concluding that “Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the US presidential election”, that the goal of this campaign was “to undermine public faith in the US democratic process”, and that “Putin and the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump”;

Whereas, on March 20, 2017, the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) testified that he was authorized by the Department of Justice to confirm that the FBI is investigating whether “there was any coordination” between individuals associated with the Trump presidential campaign and the Russian Government;

Whereas part 600 of title 28, Code of Federal Regulations, as in effect on March 7, 2019 (in this resolution referred to as “Special Counsel Regulations”), provides for the appointment of a Special Counsel when the Attorney General or Acting Attorney General “determines that criminal investigation of a person or matter is warranted and—(a) That investigation * * * by a United States Attorney’s Office or litigating Division of the Department of Justice would present a conflict of interest for the Department or other extraordinary circumstances; and (b) That under the circumstances, it would be in the public interest to appoint an outside Special Counsel to assume responsibility for the matter”;

Whereas the Special Counsel Regulations call for any individual named as Special Counsel to be a “lawyer with a reputation for integrity and impartial decision making and with appropriate experience to ensure that both the investigation will be conducted ably, expeditiously and thoroughly, and that investigative and prosecutorial decisions will be supported by an informed understanding of the criminal law and Department of Justice policies”;

Whereas, on May 17, 2017, the Acting Attorney General appointed former FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III to serve as Special Counsel “to ensure a full and thorough investigation of the Russian government’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election”, including an examination of “any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump”, “any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation”, and “any other matters within the scope of 28 CFR 600.4(a)”;

Whereas the Acting Attorney General explained that he had appointed Special Counsel Mueller because he “determined that it is in the public interest * * * to * * * appoint a Special Counsel to assume responsibility for this matter * * * based upon the unique circumstances, the public interest requires [him] to place this investigation under the authority of a person who exercises a degree of independence from the normal chain of command * * * [and that] a Special Counsel is necessary in order for the American people to have full confidence in the outcome. Our nation is grounded on the rule of law, and the public must be assured that government officials administer the law fairly”;

Whereas Special Counsel Mueller has previously served in the Department of Justice as a prosecutor, United States Attorney, and Director of the FBI under both Republican and Democratic administrations, and his selection as the Special Counsel elicited bipartisan praise recognizing his reputation for competence, fairness, and nonpartisanship;

Whereas the Special Counsel’s investigation has thus far resulted in the public indictment of 34 individuals and 3 companies, 7 guilty pleas, and 1 conviction following a jury trial;

Whereas the Special Counsel Regulations provide that “[a]t the conclusion of the Special Counsel’s work, he or she shall provide the Attorney General with a confidential report explaining the prosecution or declination decisions reached by the Special Counsel”;

Whereas, on January 15, 2019, at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Attorney General William Barr testified “I * * * believe it is very important that the public and Congress be informed of the results of the special counsel’s work. For that reason, my goal will be to provide as much transparency as I can consistent with the law”;

Whereas, on February 22, 2019, the chairs of six committees of the House of Representatives wrote to Attorney General Barr to inform him of their expectation that he will make Special Counsel Mueller’s report public “to the maximum extent permitted by law”;

Whereas transparency is consistent with the overall purpose and intent of the Special Counsel Regulations and the accompanying Department of Justice commentary, which notes the importance of “ensur[ing] congressional and public confidence in the integrity of the process”;

Whereas the need for transparency is most pronounced with regard to investigations that involve the President or individuals associated with his campaign as the President is responsible for the appointment of the senior leadership of the Department of Justice;

Whereas the Department of Justice’s United States Attorney’s Manual indicates that in public filings and proceedings, prosecutors “should remain sensitive to the privacy and reputation interests of uncharged third-parties”, that is, of persons who the Department considers may be, but are not yet criminally charged;

Whereas this general nonstatutory policy of sensitivity to the “interests of uncharged third-parties” should be inapplicable to a sitting President because the Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Counsel has previously written that “a sitting President is constitutionally immune from indictment and criminal prosecution”;

Whereas the Department of Justice has on numerous recent occasions provided investigatory information to Congress and the public concerning investigations of high-level public officials in both pending and closed cases;

Whereas in the only other instance where a Special Counsel was appointed under the Special Counsel Regulations (in 1999, concerning the 1993 confrontation in Waco, Texas), both the interim and final reports, including findings, provided by the Special Counsel were released to the public by the Attorney General; and

Whereas the allegations at the center of Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation strike at the core of our democracy, and there is an overwhelming public interest in releasing the Special Counsel’s report to ensure public confidence in both the process and the result of the investigation: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), That Congress—

(1) calls for the public release of any report, including findings, Special Counsel Mueller provides to the Attorney General, except to the extent the public disclosure of any portion thereof is expressly prohibited by law; and

(2) calls for the full release to Congress of any report, including findings, Special Counsel Mueller provides to the Attorney General.

Passed the House of Representatives March 14, 2019.

Attest:

https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-concurrent-resolution/24

House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) unveiled an investigation by the House Judiciary Committee into the alleged obstruction of justice, public corruption, and other abuses of power by President Trump, his associates, and members of his Administration.  As a first step, the Committee has served document requests to 81 agencies, entities, and individuals believed to have information relevant to the investigation.

“Over the last several years, President Trump has evaded accountability for his near-daily attacks on our basic legal, ethical, and constitutional rules and norms,” said Chairman Jerrold Nadler.  “Investigating these threats to the rule of law is an obligation of Congress and a core function of the House Judiciary Committee.  We have seen the damage done to our democratic institutions in the two years that the Congress refused to conduct responsible oversight.  Congress must provide a check on abuses of power.  Equally, we must protect and respect the work of Special Counsel Mueller, but we cannot rely on others to do the investigative work for us.  Our work is even more urgent after senior Justice Department officials have suggested that they may conceal the work of the Special Counsel’s investigation from the public.

“We have sent these document requests in order to begin building the public record.  The Special Counsel’s office and the Southern District of New York are aware that we are taking these steps.  We will act quickly to gather this information, assess the evidence, and follow the facts where they lead with full transparency with the American people.  This is a critical time for our nation, and we have a responsibility to investigate these matters and hold hearings for the public to have all the facts.  That is exactly what we intend to do.”

The Committee’s investigation will cover three main areas:

  • Obstruction of Justice, including the possibility of interference by the President and others in a number of criminal investigations and other official proceedings, as well as the alleged cover-up of violations of the law;
  • Public Corruption, including potential violations of the emoluments clauses of the U.S. Constitution, conspiracy to violate federal campaign and financial reporting laws, and other criminal misuses of official positions for personal gain; and
  • Abuses of Power, including attacks on the press, the judiciary, and law enforcement agencies; misuse of the pardon power and other presidential authorities; and attempts to misuse the power of the Office of the Presidency.

A list of individuals served with document requests can be found below:

  1. Alan Garten
  2. Alexander Nix
  3. Allen Weisselberg
  4. American Media Inc
  5. Anatoli Samochornov
  6. Andrew Intrater
  7. Annie Donaldson
  8. Brad Parscale
  9. Brittany Kaiser
  10. Cambridge Analytica
  11. Carter Page
  12. Columbus Nova
  13. Concord Management and Consulting
  14. Corey Lewandowski
  15. David Pecker
  16. Department of Justice 
  17. Don McGahn
  18. Donald J Trump Revocable Trust 
  19. Donald Trump Jr.
  20. Dylan Howard
  21. Eric Trump
  22. Erik Prince
  23. Federal Bureau of Investigation
  24. Felix Sater 
  25. Flynn Intel Group
  26. General Services Administration 
  27. George Nader
  28. George Papadopoulos
  29. Hope Hicks
  30. Irakly Kaveladze
  31. Jared Kushner
  32. Jason Maloni
  33. Jay Sekulow
  34. Jeff Sessions
  35. Jerome Corsi 
  36. John Szobocsan 
  37. Julian Assange
  38. Julian David Wheatland
  39. Keith Davidson 
  40. KT McFarland
  41. Mark Corallo 
  42. Matt Tait
  43. Matthew Calamari 
  44. Michael Caputo
  45. Michael Cohen
  46. Michael Flynn
  47. Michael Flynn Jr 
  48. Paul Erickson
  49. Paul Manafort
  50. Peter Smith (Estate)
  51. Randy Credico
  52. Reince Priebus 
  53. Rhona Graff
  54. Rinat Akhmetshin
  55. Rob Goldstone
  56. Roger Stone
  57. Ronald Lieberman
  58. Sam Nunberg
  59. SCL Group Limited
  60. Sean Spicer 
  61. Sheri Dillon 
  62. Stefan Passantino
  63. Steve Bannon
  64. Ted Malloch
  65. The White House
  66. Trump Campaign
  67. Trump Foundation
  68. Trump Organization
  69. Trump Transition
  70. Viktor Vekselberg
  71. Wikileaks 
  72. 58th Presidential Inaugural Committee
  73. Christopher Bancroft Burnham
  74. Frontier Services Group
  75. J.D. Gordon
  76. Kushner Companies
  77. NRA
  78. Rick Gates
  79. Tom Barrack
  80. Tom Bossert
  81. Tony Fabrizio

BACKGROUND

For two years, in the absence of responsible oversight by the Republican Majority, House Judiciary Committee Democrats wrote over one hundred letters to the White House, the Administration, and House Republican Leadership documenting the failings of the Trump Administration and demanding accountability.

https://judiciary.house.gov/news/press-releases/house-judiciary-committee-unveils-investigation-threats-against-rule-law

the chairs of six committees in the U.S. House of Representatives wrote to U.S. Attorney General William Barr to demand that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report be made available to Congress together with the underlying evidence. The letter was signed by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, Committee on Oversight and Reform Chairman Elijah E. Cummings, Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Adam B. Schiff, Committee on Financial Services Chairwoman Maxine Waters, Committee on Ways and Means Chairman Richard E. Neal and Committee on Foreign Affairs Chairman Eliot L. Engel.

In their letter, the Members wrote, “Your four-page summary of the Special Counsel’s review is not sufficient for Congress, as a coequal branch of government, to perform [its] critical work. The release of the full report and the underlying evidence and documents is urgently needed by our committees to perform their duties under the Constitution.  Those duties include evaluating the underlying facts and determining whether legislative or other reforms are required—both to ensure that the Justice Department is able to carry out investigations without interference or obstruction by the President and to protect our future elections from foreign interference…We look forward to receiving the report in full no later than April 2, and to begin receiving the underlying evidence and documents that same day.”

https://oversight.house.gov/news/press-releases/house-committee-chairs-demand-doj-release-full-mueller-report-underlying

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