House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) unveiled yet another investigation on Monday, this one focused on alleged abuses of power by President Donald Trump.
Trump has been at the center of an ongoing federal investigation virtually since taking office.
Nadler said the new investigation will focus on obstruction of justice, public corruption and other alleged abuses of power by the president or his associates.
The announcement came amid a handful of other ongoing congressional investigations against the president.
“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,” Nadler said in a statement. “We have seen the damage done to our democratic institutions in the two years that the Congress refused to conduct responsible oversight.”
House Democrats were quick to open those investigations into the president shortly after they gained majority control earlier this year.
They’re looking into Trump’s taxes, his past business practices and potential election interference. Nadler added that investigating threats to the rule of law is an obligation of lawmakers and a core function of the House Judiciary Committee.
The special counsel team has been investigating the president since May 2017. Robert Mueller and his staff have been looking into possible crimes committed by the president or his associates, with a particular focus on whether or not they colluded with Russian interests during the presidential election of 2016.
“Congress must provide a check on abuses of power,” Nadler said. “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.”
Nadler added that his group made the special counsel aware of the investigation in order to avoid interference.
Mueller is expected to finish the investigation in the coming weeks after nearly two years. Nadler also noted he contacted the Southern District Court of New York, which has handled some of the criminal cases passed off by the special counsel.
“We have sent these document requests in order to begin building the public record,” Nadler said. “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.”
The investigation is first looking at obstruction of justice accusations, which include the possibility of interference by the president into criminal investigations and other official proceedings.
Nadler made a sweeping records request to many officials.
It will also look into potential public corruption issues, such as possible violations of the U.S. Constitution’s emoluments clauses and conspiracy to violate federal campaign laws.
When the investigation looks into abuses of power, that will include attacks on the press, the judiciary and law enforcement agencies.
Nadler also made a sweeping records request to many officials or associates of the president. The number of people sent letters requesting those records reached 81 and included people such as former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, and Donald Trump Jr., the president’s son.
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