Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) wants to see both the Robert Mueller report and any evidence in it of possible collusion between President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign and Vladimir Putin’s Russian regime. The Trump administration’s efforts to smear Hillary Clinton, and Department of Justice precedent, he says, will help him gain access to both.
On ABC’s This Week, Schiff — chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence — said that to fully investigate possible wrongdoing by Trump, the committee will need access to not just Mueller’s final report, but the evidence he collected. Schiff said there is no law preventing the Department of Justice from sharing these with Congress and that he is prepared to use subpoenas and go to court to gain access.
Asked about a regulation that limits the release of such information in cases where there is no ultimate prosecution, Schiff pointed out that the Department of Justice can no longer make this case because of its actions in the last Congress.
“[Trump’s] Department has violated that policy repeatedly… and to a great extent over the last two years,” Schiff noted.
“I’ve had this conversation with [Deputy Attorney General] Rod Rosenstein and others on down at the Justice Department as they turned over thousands and thousands of pages of discovery in the Clinton email investigation — and there was no indictment in that investigation — that this was a new precedent that they were setting, and they were going to have to live by this precedent whether it was a Congress controlled by the Democrats or the Republicans.”
Trump himself demanded his Justice Department and the FBI to share the Clinton email investigation records with the House Judiciary Committee in the last Congress.
Of course, while it is unclear whether Mueller will ultimately attempt to indict Trump himself, he has indicted or obtained guilty pleas from dozens of people already in the Russia investigation, including several former key Trump campaign advisers.
“We will obviously subpoena the report, will be bring Bob Mueller in to testify before Congress. We will take it to court if necessary. And in the end, I think the Department understands they are going to have to make this public,” Schiff concluded.