U.S. News

House judiciary committee will vote Wednesday to hold Barr in contempt

By Nicholas Sakelaris   |   May 6, 2019 at 11:58 AM
House judiciary committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., set the committee will have a vote Wednesday to consider holding Attorney General William Barr in contempt for failing to provide an unredacted Mueller report to Congress. Photo by Mike Theiler/UPI

May 6 (UPI) -- House Democrats will vote Wednesday to hold Attorney General William Barr in contempt for failing to provide an unredacted version of the Mueller report to Congress.

The Mueller report investigated possible Russian interference in the 2016 election and collusion with the Trump campaign. It found insufficient evidence that Trump's campaign worked with the Russians or that President Donald Trump obstructed justice by interfering with the FBI investigation. But Democrats want to know what's hidden in the report by having access to the redacted information and have scheduled a hearing to vote on a resolution holding Barr in contempt.

"With the 2020 elections approaching, the committee requires the most complete possible understanding of Russia's influence and hacking operations," the resolution reads. "Without this information, the committee is unable to fully perform its responsibility to protect the impending 2020 elections -- and thus our democracy itself -- from a recurrence of Russian interference."

Barr had until 9 a.m. EDT Monday to comply with the subpoena for a full report with no omissions. House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., said Congress is entitled to the full report and wants to have Mueller testify before the House on May 15.

"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," Nadler said.

President Donald Trump posted on Twitter Sunday again that there was no collusion or obstruction found in the 400-plus-page Mueller report.

"Why would the Democrats in Congress now need Robert Mueller to testify ... Bob Mueller should not testify. No redos for the Dems," Trump tweeted.

Barr testified last week before the Senate Judiciary Committee but no-showed at the House because he didn't agree with the format of the Democratic-controlled committee.

The Justice Department called the request for the full Mueller report "extraordinarily burdensome," especially because of the grand jury material, which can't be released without a court order.

If the committee votes to hold Barr in contempt, the matter would be taken up by the full house.

"They know the Justice Department is working to negotiate even as they pursue contempt charges, making their move today illogical and disingenuous," Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., a ranking member of the Judiciary Committee. "Democrats have launched a proxy war smearing the attorney general when their anger actually lies with the president and the special counsel, who found neither conspiracy nor obstruction."

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