House panel to vote on subpoenas for Kushner, Sessions, 10 others

Then-Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing in February, 2015.


By COLBY ITKOWITZ | The Washington Post | Published: July 9, 2019

WASHINGTON — The House Judiciary Committee announced Tuesday it will vote this week to subpoena 12 individuals with connections to President Donald Trump, including the president’s son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner and former attorney general Jeff Sessions, as part of its ongoing investigations into whether Trump sought to obstruct justice during the probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

The vote is scheduled for Thursday.

The panel also will vote to subpoena documents related to the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance policy on migrants who enter the country illegally, which led to the separation of thousands of children from their parents in 2018. The quest for information comes amid intensified outcry over the treatment of children held in migrant detention centers, and a debate over the humanitarian crisis caused by an influx of Central Americans seeking asylum in the U.S.

“We will get answers one way or the other,” Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., said in a statement.

A little more than four months ago, Nadler’s committee cast a wide net for documents from an array of 80 individuals and entities, seeking information on a range of inquiries into Trump’s administration, campaign, business and personal finances.

The president has decried House Democrats’ probes as “harassment,” has refused to comply with their requests and has urged associates to ignore subpoenas. In June, Democrats voted to allow committees to file lawsuits against those who defy congressional subpoenas.

“Today’s latest effort to relitigate the special counsel’s investigation remains unimpressive and unproductive. Mr. Mueller’s team issued more than 2,800 subpoenas and concluded that no Americans conspired with Russia. Even if Chairman Nadler still believes subpoenas are conversation starters, it’s hard to imagine this handful of subpoenas will do anything but reinforce the principal conclusions we’ve been able to read about for months.” Rep. Douglas Collins of Georgia, the top Republican on the panel, said in a statement.

Congressional Democrats and the White House are at a standoff, with Democrats escalating their efforts to conduct oversight of the president and the White House digging in on its contention that their demands are unlawful. The resistance has boosted the push for impeachment, and about 80 Democrats are calling for proceedings to begin.

The committee is scheduled to receive testimony next week from former special counsel Robert Mueller, who led the nearly two-year investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible ties to the Trump campaign.

In addition to seeking subpoenas for Kushner and Sessions, the committee will vote to subpoena former White House chief of staff John Kelly, former national security adviser Michael Flynn, former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, former deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein, former White House deputy chief of staff Rick Dearborn, assistant attorney general Jody Hunt, former White House staff secretary Rob Porter, National Enquirer editor Dylan Howard, American Media chief executive David Pecker, and Keith Davidson, former attorney for adult-film star Stormy Daniels, who has said she had a sexual encounter with Trump years ago and was paid during the 2016 presidential campaign to keep silent about her claims.

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