Trump's GOP House Henchmen Lay the Groundwork to Hold Top DOJ Official Overseeing Russia Probe in Contempt
House Speaker Paul Ryan caved to Donald Trump's Russia hatchet squad and now the GOP caucus is closer than ever to delivering Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein an ultimatum: hand over every sensitive document they want on the Russia probe or be held in contempt and possibly impeached. Bloomberg writes:
Passing the resolution would escalate pressure on Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to hand over material, including some related to the origins of the investigation into whether Donald Trump’s presidential campaign colluded with Russian meddling in the 2016 election. The measure would give Rosenstein and other officials until July 6 to comply.
The resolution itself doesn't explicitly reference impeachment or even contempt and it's effectively unenforceable, but the House henchmen have been hanging that threat over Rosenstein's head for months. GOP Reps. Mark Meadows and Jim Jordan, so-called Freedom Caucus staples, now say the resolution is coming to the House floor on Thursday, contingent on the Rules Committee giving it final approval Wednesday afternoon.
A full House vote would supercharge a battle that has primarily been waged by a handful of GOP zealots into potentially having the imprimatur of the entire Republican caucus. The showdown comes as both Rosenstein and FBI director Christopher Wray prepare to testify before the House Judiciary Committee Thursday morning about the agency's Inspector General report on the Clinton email investigation.
Rosenstein does not appear to be without some recourse. He has already threatened to request that the House conduct an internal investigation of the House Intelligence Committee staff. Though it's unclear where that stands, doing so would give him the ability to subpoena the internal communications of the staff.