Washington, D.C. –Today, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) spoke on the House floor in support of H.Con.Res. 24, which calls for Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report to be released to the public and to Congress.
Below are Rep. Nadler's full remarks, as prepared, and a video can be found here:
"H. Con. Res. 24 expresses the Sense of Congress that any report Special Counsel Robert Mueller delivers to the Attorney General should be released to the public and to Congress. This Concurrent Resolution is important for several reasons.
"First, transparency is fundamental to the Special Counsel process, especially when dealing with matters of national security involving the President.
"In January 2017, the U.S. Intelligence Community unanimously reported that "Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the US presidential election" and that "Putin and the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump." As a result of the importance of this charge and the clear conflict of interest in a matter involving the President, Robert Mueller was appointed as Special Counsel by the Acting Attorney General "in order for the American people to have full confidence in the outcome."
"This is why in the only other instance involving the appointment of a Special Counsel under the regulations (concerning the Waco tragedy), the Special Counsel’s Report was released in full by the Attorney General.
"Second, this Resolution is critical because of the many questions and criticisms of the investigation raised by the President and his Administration.
"It is important that Congress stand up for the principle of full transparency at a time when the President has publicly attacked the Russian investigation more than 1,100 times and counting. Among other things, the President has referred to the investigation as the "Mueller Witch Hunt" and called it a "hoax," "rigged," and a "scam."
"This Resolution is also needed because high ranking DOJ officials have indicated that they may not release information about individuals who are not indicted. Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein stated last month that "If we aren’t prepared to prove our case beyond a reasonable doubt in court, then we have no business making allegations against American citizens." But this policy should not apply in the event the Department adheres to its policy that it cannot indict a sitting President.
"To maintain that a sitting president cannot be indicted, and then to withhold evidence of wrongdoing from Congress because the President cannot be charged, is to convert DOJ policy into the means for a cover-up.
"Third, releasing the Mueller Report, even in its entirety, does not absolve the Department of Justice of its obligation to provide Congress with the underlying evidence uncovered by the Special Counsel.
"This expectation is well-grounded in precedent set by the Department last Congress in connection with three Republican-led investigations -- into Hillary Clinton’s emails, the dismissal of former Acting FBI Director McCabe, and allegations of bias concerning the Russia investigation.
"With respect to the investigation involving Secretary Clinton’s emails this included DOJ releasing to Congress more than 880,000 pages of documents regarding the FBI’s decision making; identifying to Congress the names of career officials involved in the charging decision; identifying to Congress specific court cases relied on in the charging decision; and making dozens of DOJ and FBI personnel available to Congress for transcribed interviews.
"With respect to the dismissal of former Acting Director McCabe, this included releasing to Congress all documents relied on by the Office of Professional Responsibility in making their decision. And with respect to claims of bias in the Russia investigation, this included not only releasing to the public an otherwise classified foreign intelligence application, but also releasing to Congress: (i) all underlying documents and communications involving the FISA application; (ii) four memos detailing former FBI Director’s communications with the President; (iii) materials pertaining to classified briefings involving the Trump and Clinton presidential campaigns; and (iv) making even more DOJ and FBI officials available for a total of 21 transcribed interviews and hearings.
"A vote for this Resolution will send a clear signal to both the American people and the Department of Justice that Congress believes transparency is a fundamental principle necessary to ensure that government remains accountable to the people.
"I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to join me in supporting this common-sense Resolution.
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