House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) said Monday the panel would move toward holding Attorney General William Barr in contempt for failing to turn over a complete, unredacted version of the Mueller report and its underlying evidence.
Nadler scheduled a vote on Wednesday to mark up a contempt resolution over Barr’s refusal to turn over special counsel Robert Mueller’s report into Russian election interference and President Donald Trump’s obstruction efforts. The Justice Department has said that the committee “lacks any legislative purpose for seeking the complete investigative files” and that it was inappropriate to “open up the entirety of the investigative file to congressional review.”
Nadler said that the Mueller report “offers disturbing evidence and analysis that President Trump engaged in obstruction of justice at the highest levels.”
“Congress must see the full report and underlying evidence to determine how to best move forward with oversight, legislation, and other constitutional responsibilities,” Nadler said. “The Attorney General’s failure to comply with our subpoena, after extensive accommodation efforts, leaves us no choice but to initiate contempt proceedings in order to enforce the subpoena and access the full, unredacted report. If the Department presents us with a good faith offer for access to the full report and the underlying evidence, I reserve the right to postpone these proceedings.”
In a letter to Nadler on Monday afternoon, the Justice Department said the House Judiciary Committee “has not articulated any legitimate basis for requesting the law enforcement documents that bear upon more than two dozen criminal cases and investigations, including ongoing matters,” a reference to the more than dozen ongoing investigations that grew out of the Mueller probe.
The letter from Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd invited Nadler and House Judiciary Ranking Member Rep. Doug Collins (R-N.C.) to the Justice Department on Wednesday to “negotiate an accommodation that meets the legitimate interests of each of our coequal branches of government.”
The contempt markup is scheduled for the same day.
Read the contempt resolution below.