- The House of Representatives may bring more articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump.
- Doug Letter, the lead counsel for House Democrats, reportedly told a federal appeals court on Friday, „That is on the table. There’s no doubt.“
- He also confirmed that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had signed off on his comments.
- Letter is arguing two cases before the court; the first seeks to obtain the former special counsel Robert Mueller’s grand-jury material related to the FBI’s Russia probe, and the second seeks to secure testimony from a key witness in Mueller’s obstruction-of-justice investigation.
- If Democrats bring more charges against Trump, it’s likely at least one of them will focus on obstruction of justice and cite the eleven instances of obstruction Mueller listed in his final report.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
The lead counsel for the House of Representatives indicated to a federal court on Friday that the chamber may bring additional articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump.
„That is on the table,“ Doug Letter, the lawyer for House Democrats, said during the hearing, according to Politico. „There’s no doubt.“ He also confirmed that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had signed off on his comments.
Letter’s remarks came during two back-to-back hearings on Friday for two separate court cases House Democrats have brought against the Justice Department. Politico reported that the hearings were overseen by two partially overlapping panels with three judges each.
One of the cases seeks to obtain the former special counsel Robert Mueller’s grand-jury material related to the FBI’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 US election.
The other relates to the House Judiciary Committee’s efforts to secure testimony from Don McGahn, the former White House counsel who is cited extensively in Mueller’s findings in his investigation into whether Trump obstructed justice in the Russia probe.
If Democrats bring more charges against Trump, it’s likely at least one of them will focus on obstruction of justice and cite the more than 10 instance of obstruction Mueller listed in his final report.
On Friday, referring to the gravity of the two cases, Letter said, „This is it. There is nothing more important than determining whether the president of the United States should remain the president of the United States.“
The House of Representatives passed two articles of impeachment against Trump last month. The first charged him with abuse of power and the second with obstruction of Congress.
Both relate to his monthslong efforts to strong-arm Ukraine into delivering him political dirt on a 2020 rival while withholding military aid and a White House meeting for Ukraine’s newly elected president, along with his subsequent attempts to stonewall Congress as it investigated the whistleblower complaint that sparked the impeachment inquiry.
The impeachment process is in limbo. Though the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives passed both articles, Pelosi has so far withheld them from the Republican-controlled Senate, which is constitutionally mandated to conduct a trial determining whether to convict Trump and trigger his removal from office.
Pelosi has said that the House will not transmit the articles to the Senate until it has assurances from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell that he will conduct a trial that’s impartial and fair to Democrats.
McConnell, meanwhile, has publicly said he does not intend to be an impartial juror and is working „in total coordination“ with the White House ahead of the trial.
Trump, for his part, has made no secret of his fury with Pelosi and has spent the past few weeks ranting about the California Democrat and impeachment to his 68 million Twitter followers.
The public airing of grievances is a staple of the Trump presidency. And the former New York real-estate mogul has been no stranger to legal troubles in the past.
But impeachment has struck a particularly sensitive nerve with the president.
Asked about Trump’s mindset in recent days, one Republican strategist in frequent contact with the White House, who requested anonymity to discuss internal conversations, told Insider Trump was incensed about impeachment because he believes it undermines his political prowess.
Exacerbating things is Pelosi’s position as the tip of the Democratic spear.
The House speaker has been a thorn in the president’s side since January 2019, after the Democratic Party resumed control of the House of Representatives.
In the months since, Trump has been forced to make concession after concession to Pelosi and the Democrats – a major adjustment for a president who sees himself as having the „absolute“ right to govern as he sees fit and whose power went virtually unchecked while Republicans controlled both chambers of Congress.
Now, as Pelosi holds on to the articles of impeachment, and with the hanging threat of even more charges against him, Trump has no choice but to wait for Democrats to budge.
One person who was close to Trump’s legal team during the Russia probe told Insider last week: „As long as those articles of impeachment sit in Nancy Pelosi’s hands, Trump is powerless.“
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