House Judiciary Committee chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY) said Wednesday that Attorney General William Barr is in “defiance” of Democrats’ subpoena of special counsel Robert Mueller’s unredacted report.
House Judiciary Committee Democrats have moved to subpoena the unredacted Mueller report and its underlying evidence. Due to Barr’s opposition to submitting the Mueller report, the Democrats moved to hold Barr in contempt of Congress.
House Judiciary Committee chairman Nadler (D-NY) said in his opening statement during the hearing, “Today, we consider a report recommending that the House of Representatives hold AG William Barr in contempt of Congress for defying a valid subpoena issued by this committee. This is not a step we take lightly.”
“I have consistently stated that if we are to do our jobs as members of the House Judiciary Committee, all of the members require meaningful access to the report and the underlying documents,” Nadler said.
Attorney General Barr has claimed that the DOJ has traditionally redacted information relating to grand jury information, information that would compromise intelligence gathering and sources, information that could interfere with ongoing investigations, and information that could impact the privacy and reputations of people not directly relating to the case.
Nadler said that the Donald Trump administration was acting in “blanket defiance” of Congress’s duties, which he claimed was “entirely within legal rights” to receive.
Rep. Nadler said that the Justice Department “is heading in the wrong direction.”
“Trump and his enablers may brazenly try to cover up misdeeds uncovered by the special counsel, but in this committee, we will represent the American people and ensure the truth is known. … If allowed to go unchecked, this obstruction means the end of congressional oversight,” Nadler said.
The Donald Trump administration has claimed executive privilege so that Democrats such as Nadler cannot obtain the unredacted Mueller report.
“Our exhaustive negotiations with the Department of Justice have unfortunately left us back where we began — with unprecedented obstruction by an administration that has now announced its intention to block all attempts at congressional oversight. It’s our constitutional duty to respond,” Nadler added.