President's Impeachment Defense Continues to Contradict DOJ's Arguments in Lawsuit to Obtain Mueller Grand Jury Material
Washington, January 28, 2020
Tags: Government Oversight
Washington, D.C. – Today, as part of the House Judiciary Committee's lawsuit to compel the Trump Administration to produce grand jury material related to former Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation, the General Counsel to the House of Representatives informed the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit that the Trump Administration is once again taking positions during the President’s impeachment trial that fundamentally contradict what it has argued in federal court.
In the lawsuit, the Justice Department is arguing that impeachment trials are not “judicial proceedings” under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 6(e), which allows disclosures of grand jury information in that context. The General Counsel’s letter informs the D.C. Circuit that one of the President’s attorneys during the impeachment trial stated that “the Senate is a court” during impeachment proceedings, and has been referred to as such “for literally decades.” These statements contradict the Justice Department’s claims that impeachment trials are not “judicial proceedings” and that this exception “requires proceedings before a court, not the Senate.” The letter states that the President's new position once again undermines positions that his Administration is taking in federal court proceedings. The Executive Branch cannot have it both ways.