DOJ Docs Showdown Coming Thursday on House Floor, Meadows Says
After yet another deadline passed Monday without a concrete response, congressional investigators believe it's time to take drastic action
Congressional investigators are “going to have floor action this week” if Department of Justice (DOJ) and FBI officials fail to turn over the remaining subpoenaed documents by Friday, House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) said Monday on “The Ingraham Angle.”
“I can tell you that we’re going to have floor action this week, Laura — this week on the House floor — where we compel them to turn over those documents,” Meadows (shown above left) told Fox News host Laura Ingraham. Meadows is a member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
Half a dozen House and Senate committees have been seeking DOJ and FBI documents regarding investigations of 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server to conduct official business as secretary of state. They also subpoenaed documents regarding the events leading to special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into allegations of collusion between Russia and President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign.
After slowly increasing the pace of their sluggish document production in recent weeks following lawmakers’ threatening to hold them in contempt or impeach them, DOJ officials rebuffed House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes’ (R-Calif.) Monday deadline for document production.
Nunes specifically sought documents regarding the FBI’s use of a confidential informant to interact with Trump campaign officials prior to the official opening of the Trump-Russia investigation. But Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd wrote Nunes Monday saying, “Many of your requests relate to documents and information regarding issues surrounding confidential human sources that are solely in the custody and control of the FBI.”
“The FBI retains and has the ability to produce the documents requested in a manner consistent with its obligation to protect confidential human sources and methods,” Boyd continued, according to Fox News.
The next step for congressional committees is floor action to compel document production, Meadows said. When Ingraham asked if Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) would comply with Meadows’ request for action, he replied, “We’re going to count on that. This week.”
“[Ryan] made a promise to [Rep.] Jim Jordan [R-Ohio] and I last week that said if we didn’t get all the documents by Friday … we would see floor action this week,” Meadows said. “I’m waiting for him to follow through on that commitment.”
Meadows said “it’s time” for the country to “become transparent. Give us the documents, let us put them out to the American people, let them judge for themselves what is right and what’s wrong.” He added that the continued evasions and excuses from DOJ and FBI are “creative writing.”
“For them to suggest that we have everything is just actually incorrect,” Meadows said.
But the information congressional investigators do have shows “one common theme” of “bias against this president,” Meadows warned. He called the anti-Trump and pro-Clinton bias exhibited by key FBI figures in particular “just extremely troubling.”
Also on Monday, former Attorney General Michael Mukasey told Ingraham that he found former senior FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok’s anti-Trump and pro-Clinton text messages with former FBI lawyer Lisa Page on the night Trump clinched the GOP nomination “significant.”
Mukasey noted that Page “wrote to Strzok, ‘This is unbelievable that Trump has got the nomination.’ His response was, ‘Yeah, this increases the pressure to terminate MYE, which was the code name, Mid Year Exam, for the Clinton investigation.'”
“That’s not just an expression of opinion. That is a statement about how we ought to do our jobs,” Mukasey warned. “And that, on my reading, was not in the [DOJ Inspector General] report. I don’t recall seeing it. That’s something I think [Congress] ought to question Strzok about when he testifies.”
House Committee on the Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) subpoenaed Strzok to testify before the committee Wednesday in a closed deposition. Goodlatte has promised a public hearing with Strzok at a later date.