Jerrold Nadler

Impeachment or Bust? Democrats Have Few Options on Kavanaugh Inquiries
Lawsuits, possible House probes expected, but party largely staying mum for now

Democratic members of the Senate Judiciary Committee ponder their next move during a session on the nomination of now-Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh on Sept. 28. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Brett M. Kavanaugh looked bewildered. Sen. Kamala Harris looked perturbed but determined. It was hour ten of the then-Supreme Court nominee’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee early last month, and the California Democrat seemed to have him backed into a corner.

Harris, a former prosecutor, was very much back in a courtroom. She was trying to get her witness, Kavanaugh, to reveal the name — or names — of anyone at the Washington law firm of Trump’s personal attorney with whom she alleged he had discussed special counsel Robert S. Mueller III and his ongoing Russia election meddling investigation the president almost daily refers to as a “witch hunt.”

Kavanaugh Confirmation Solidifies Supreme Court Tilt to the Right
Bitterly divided chamber votes in rare Saturday session to end long fight

The Senate confirmed Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court on a rare Saturday session and amid a Capitol awash in protests. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court on Saturday might close one of the Senate’s most bitter and divisive chapters, but the resulting discord is bound to reverberate for years at the high court, in the halls of Congress and at the ballot box.

The 50-48 vote gives President Donald Trump his second Supreme Court appointment in as many years and solidifies the court’s conservative tilt for decades. The confirmation battle at first raged over the court’s ideological balance, then turned to questions of temperament, truthfulness and how the Senate handled allegations of sexual misconduct in the “Me Too” era.

Witnesses Increasingly Wary of House GOP Probe into DOJ, FBI Bias
Pattern of broken confidentiality agreements leaves interviewees vulnerable to selective leaks, critics say

Former FBI Director James Comey turned down a request for a private meeting with the House task force looking into potential anti-Trump bias in federal law enforcement agencies, but would “welcome the opportunity to testify at a public hearing,” his attorney wrote. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Witnesses for the House GOP’s investigation into potential bias at the top levels of U.S. law enforcement have grown increasingly dubious of the probe — to the point that some actually prefer public hearings to private ones.

Case in point: Former FBI Director James Comey on Monday declined to submit to a private interview with members of the House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform panels, who comprise a joint “task force” examining whether “decisions made and not made” by the Justice Department and FBI during the 2016 Clinton email and Trump-Russia investigations were tinged with anti-Republican bias.

Subpoena orders DOJ to Hand Over Memos Drafted by Former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe
Material may include information on allegation that Deputy AG Rob Rosenstein suggested recording president

A subpoena issued Thursday orders the DOJ to hand over memos drafted by former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte issued a subpoena Thursday ordering the Department of Justice to hand over memos drafted by former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe that detail his meetings with top DOJ officials.

In one of those meetings, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein allegedly suggested secretly recording President Donald Trump and invoking the 25th Amendment to remove him from office.

Democrats Pan Proposal to Limit Green Cards for Poor Immigrants
Administration touts rule as moving toward ‘merit-based’ immigration

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said in a statement that “those seeking to immigrate to the United States must show they can support themselves financially.” (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democratic lawmakers are criticizing a new rule proposed by the Trump administration that would make it harder for immigrants who receive public benefits to obtain green cards.

The 447-page proposed rule, unveiled by the Department of Homeland Security on Saturday, would expand the government’s ability to deny a green card — and eventual citizenship — to applicants deemed likely to rely on programs including Medicaid, Section 8 low-income housing, and food stamps. The proposed rule represents a significant step in the administration’s efforts to move toward a “merit-based” immigration system, rather than the family-based system currently in place.

Amid Reports of Rosenstein Firing, Democrats Want Vote to Protect Mueller
One Democrat suggest Judiciary hearing on Trump obstructing justice, GOP member wants Rosenstein to testify

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein arrives in the Capitol for a meeting with a bipartisan group of lawmakers on the Russia investigation in May 24. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As news broke Monday morning that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein was resigning or expecting to be fired, Democrats were quick to call for congressional action to protect the special counsel investigation that Rosenstein has managed. 

“With Rosenstein’s departure there is one less barrier protecting the Mueller investigation from President [Donald] Trump’s interference,” Florida Rep. Val Demings said in a statement. “Congress must take immediate steps to uphold the Constitution and the rule of law — which protects all of us — by shielding the Mueller investigation against President Trump’s obstruction."

Former House Counsels Cast Doubt on GOP Subpoena in Justice Bias Probe
Differences in draft subpoena and final version ‘appear to be material,’ former counsels write in letter

House Judiciary ranking member Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., has called Republicans’ probe into potential FISA abuse and bias at the FBI and Department of Justice a “distraction” meant to undermine ongoing investigations into President Donald Trump’s associates possible ties to Russia. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform committees’ investigation into possible bias among top Department of Justice and FBI officials appears to rely on an invalid subpoena, five previous House general counsels wrote in a letter to the leaders of the Judiciary Committee.

That would jeopardize any court proceedings that could arise from it — including charging Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein for contempt of Congress, a threat issued in July by House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows of North Carolina.

Democrats Call Bologna on Meadows’ Strzok-Page Theory
Strzok, Page were not talking about leaking to the press, Democrats say — they were talking about combatting leaks

Former FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok’s text messages with Department of Justice lawyer Lisa Page have been scrutinized for months by House Republicans. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democrats attempted to refute point-by-point a letter from GOP Rep. Mark Meadows to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in which Meadows claims text messages between a former FBI agent and a Justice Department lawyer recently released to Congress show there is a “systemic culture of media leaking by high-ranking officials” at the agencies.

But the fired FBI official Peter Strzok and DOJ lawyer Lisa Page were not texting about leaking information to the press — they were texting about combatting leaks, Democrats said Tuesday.

Democrats Defend DOJ’s Bruce Ohr Day After Republican Grilling
GOP meetings on potential bias at DOJ and FBI have Democrats crying foul

Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, D-Md., pictured above, and Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., the top Democrats on the Oversight and Judiciary committees, respectively, refuted House Republicans’ claims about Department of Justice official Bruce Ohr’s involvement in the so-called Steele dossier. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democrats on the House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform committees have jumped to the defense of Justice Department official Bruce Ohr, who met behind closed doors with Republican lawmakers Tuesday as part of their probe into potential bias at the top reaches of U.S. law enforcement.

Top Judiciary Democrat Jerrold Nadler of New York and Oversight ranking member Elijah E. Cummings said the private hearing with Ohr, the second of four meetings Republicans have scheduled with DOJ and FBI officials over the August recess, was meant to distract from President Donald Trump’s increasingly precarious legal position as special counsel Robert S. Mueller III secures guilty verdicts and plea agreements with multiple people in Trump’s inner circle.

Democrats Want ‘Impenetrable’ Case Against Trump Before Impeachment
As midterms loom, Dems don’t want to alienate moderate voters with impeachment chatter

Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., and other Democratic leaders have avoided talking about any plans of impeachment of President Donald Trump. Instead, they’re urging members to wait until the special counsel has concluded its investigation into the 2016 Trump campaign and possible obstruction by the president. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

It’s not that Democrats would never try to impeach President Donald Trump. It’s that they just don’t want to talk about it — yet.

Under oath in a New York courtroom last Tuesday, the president’s former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, implicated his old boss in a crime, saying Trump directed him to violate campaign finance laws by paying off two of his mistresses, including adult film actress and director Stormy Daniels, with thousands of dollars in hush money.