Friday, February 17, 2017

CONYERS & THOMPSON Condemn Reports Of Trump's Military Deportation Force


Washington, DC – House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI) and House Homeland Security Committee Ranking Member Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), today released the following joint statement in response to reports that President Donald Trump’s Department of Homeland Security had plans to use the National Guard to round up and deport undocumented immigrants:

Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
“This draft memo shows the depths that Donald Trump will go to implement his callous “deportation force” and instill panic and fear among immigrant families and communities throughout this nation.

“It is completely outrageous and disturbing that this document, generated from within the highest levels of this country’s government, would even contemplate using our military on our own soil to round up immigrants. Additionally, the memo outlines cruel and draconian changes to how this country would treat unaccompanied children and would force millions of others into detention with escalating costs.  This should be of concern to all Americans.  

“Whether or not the memo is implemented, it will undoubtedly lead to fear and intimidation in our communities, which are already reeling from Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s raids. We call on Secretary Kelly to immediately come forward and not only disavow this memo, but explain how it even came into existence.”


White House Denies It Weighed Using National Guard as Deportation Force



WASHINGTON — The Trump administration denied on Friday that it was considering using National Guard troops as a deportation force to round up undocumented immigrants, rebutting a report by The Associated Press that cited an 11-page memorandum describing such an effort.
A senior administration official at the Department of Homeland Security said the memo in the news report was an early draft that never made it to the secretary and was not seriously considered by the department.

The A.P. said the memo called for the militarization of immigration enforcement by authorizing state governors to mobilize up to 100,000 National Guard troops to find people who are not authorized to be in the United States and send them home.

The troops would be acting to carry out President Trump’s Jan. 25 executive order, in which he directed the construction of a wall along the border with Mexico and called for a more aggressive effort to deport undocumented immigrants.

Increasing the number of people deported will require more resources at the border and in the nation’s interior. Mr. Trump’s order called for a larger number of border patrol and customs agents, but that would require more money from Congress, something that is many months away, at best.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/17/us/politics/national-guard-illegal-immigrants-report.html?_r=1

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AFTER TRUMP & HOUSE GOP CALL FOR LEAK INVESTIGATION, ALL HOUSE JUDICIARY DEMS CALL FOR DOJ INSPECTOR GENERAL TO INVESTIGATE TRUMP WHISTLEBLOWER THREATS & SESSIONS’ CONFLICTS OF INTEREST



Washington, DC – After President Donald Trump and House Republicans’ calls to investigate leaks of classified information, all House Judiciary Committee Democrats, led by House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI) and Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), today wrote to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Inspector General to call for an investigation into potential Trump Administration threats to whistleblowers. The letter also requests the DOJ Inspector General to investigate potential conflicts of interest that may arise with U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions leading the department’s investigation over these matters, given his close involvement with the Trump campaign.

Conyers and Jeffries said, “During Mr. Trump’s press conference yesterday he continued his angry and unhinged threats and attacks on the law enforcement and intelligence communities, only adding to our concerns about the conflicts with Attorney General Sessions.  We therefore believe it is more important than ever that the Inspector General conduct this requested review.”

In their letter, the Members wrote, “Given the significance and magnitude of these developments, we believe it is appropriate that your office—in conjunction with other Offices of Inspectors General, if necessary—conduct an investigation into the following matters:

§  Whether the Trump Administration has engaged in any improper effort to intimidate or threaten whistleblowers under your jurisdiction, or others who are seeking to expose misconduct by Trump Administration officials.

§  Whether U.S. Attorney General Sessions has any conflict of interest, or should recuse himself from the Department’s investigation into these matters, given his involvement in the Trump campaign and his personal relationship with former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.”

Today’s letter was signed by every Democratic member of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee, including: Representatives John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX), Steve Cohen (D-TN), Hank Johnson (D-GA), Ted Deutch (D-FL), Luis Gutierrez (D-IL), Karen Bass (D-CA), Cedric Richmond (D-LA), Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), David Cicilline (D-RI), Eric Swalwell (D-CA), Ted Lieu (D-CA), Jamie Raskin (D-MD), Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) and Brad Schneider (D-IL).
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CONYERS Reintroduces Signature Bill To Provide Jobs Or Training To Every Job-Seeking American


Washington, DC Representative John Conyers, Jr. (MI-13), with support from 28 Democratic Members of Congress, reintroduced H.R. 1000, the “Humphrey-Hawkins 21st Century Full Employment and Training Act,” also known as the “Jobs for All Act.” The bill establishes a comprehensive job creation and training program that would create millions of new jobs and raise wages throughout the country. The bill, which is funded by a small tax on Wall Street speculation, would employ Americans in projects such as the renovation of housing and schools, infrastructure repair, expanding access to broadband and wireless Internet, neighborhood beautification projects, among many other community initiatives in the health and education sectors.  This direct job creation effort would be coupled with a significant increase in funding for job training programs funded under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. 

Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
Congressman Conyers said, “H.R. 1000, the Jobs for All Act, is legislation that could put an end to joblessness in America. While any reasonable observer knows that President Obama made phenomenal progress on job creation, too many urban and rural pockets of this country continue to battle the plague of unemployment, including parts of my Detroit Congressional district. If my colleagues across the aisle are serious about creating jobs, they should pass and sign the Jobs for All Act today.”

Rep. Conyers’ bill would address lingering job shortages by providing resources for employment and training programs administered by non-profit organizations, educational institutions, and state and local governments.  H.R. 1000 prioritizes projects in those regions that have higher level of unemployment, underemployment, and non-labor force participation.

Original Congressional co-sponsors of the measure include the Co-Chairs of the Congressional Full Employment Caucus, Marcy Kaptur (D-OH) and Frederica Wilson (D-FL), along with Joyce Beatty (D-OH), Michael Capuano (D-MA), Judy Chu (D-CA), Yvette Clark (D-NY), Elijah Cummings (D-MD, Danny Davis (D-IL), Keith Ellison (D-MN), John Garamendi (D-CA), Al Green (D-TX), Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ), Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX), Brenda Lawrence (D-MI), John Lewis (D-GA), Jim McGovern (D-MA), Gregory Meeks (D-NY), Gwen Moore (D-WI), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Rick Nolan (D-MN), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), Mark Pocan (D-WI), Jamie Raskin (D-MD), Tim Ryan (D-OH), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), José Serrano (D-NY), Louise Slaughter (D-NY), and Marc Veasey (D-TX).

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Thursday, February 16, 2017

HOUSE REPUBLICANS CALL FOR LEAK INVESTIGATION BUT REFUSE TO INVESTIGATE TRUMP/RUSSIA TIES OR CONFLICTS OF INTEREST


House Judiciary GOP Offers Bare Minimum Response; Strike Down Dem Amendments to Investigate Trump & Russia Ties



Last night, the Chairmen of the House Judiciary and Oversight Committees wrote a letter calling for an investigation into the leaks that exposed former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn--after consistently refusing to investigate either Flynn or Russian hacking. House Republicans have refused to investigate or even acknowledge concerns about Russian interference with the 2016 election and any Trump Administration connections to that interference.

Just yesterday, the House Judiciary Committee marked up the House Republicans’ oversight plan for the 115th Congress. You can view the original Republican plan here.

Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
In his opening statement, Ranking Member John Conyers said, “…I fear that there are several urgent matters within our jurisdiction that will not be discussed on a timely basis if we do not bring them up today…the Majority has been conspicuously silent with respect to report after report connecting various figures in the President’s inner circle to the government of Vladimir Putin….The fact that General Flynn has resigned does little to resolve a number of questions that this Committee has a responsibility to ask—especially after last night’s revelation that the Trump campaign was in direct communication with Russian intelligence operatives—and we will begin to ask some of those questions today.”Ranking Member Conyers’ full remarks are available here.

Facing criticism for failure to conduct meaningful oversight of the Trump Administration, Chairman Goodlatte offered an amendment to the oversight plan that discussed oversight into “allegations of misconduct by Executive Branch officials” and “allegations of leaks of classified information.”  Democratic Rep. Cicilline offered a successful amendment to the Goodlatte amendment, addressing “allegations of interference with our democratic institutions or efforts to improperly or illegally interfere with our elections.”  

Ranking Member Conyers had this to say about the majority's bare minimum effort: “I will not oppose the adoption of the amendment, as far as it goes, but what is disturbing is that it clearly does not go far enough.  In specifying a focus on leaks, it undermines the gravity of the wrongdoing the leaks expose.  In doing so, it appears that my Republican colleagues are embracing and channeling Donald Trump, whose administration has displayed a dangerous degree of incompetence, particularly on national security matters.  And the incompetence, dishonesty, unethical behavior, and disregard for our constitutional issues show no sign of abating.”

The final oversight plan does not specifically address any concerns about the integrity of the election or any of the alleged connections between the Trump Administration and the government of Vladimir Putin. The markup spanned more than 7 hours as Democratic members of the committee offered a number of amendments on Trump Administration contacts with the Russian government, President Trump’s ongoing conflicts of interest, and other matters that the Majority chose not to prioritize in their proposed oversight plan. 

A full list of the amendments that House Judiciary Republicans voted down is available below.

Amendment
Description
Nadler
Failed 11-16
In the Intellectual Property Subcommittee section, amends the “Federal Judiciary” section to discuss threats to federal judges.

Lofgren
Failed 13-15
In the Immigration Subcommittee section, adds a new item on the deportation of parents of minor children.

Jackson Lee
Failed 13-19
In the Crime Subcommittee section, amends the item on the FBI to discuss the FBI’s investigation of Trump Administration contacts with Russia.

Jackson Lee
Failed 11-18
In the Crime Subcommittee section, amends the item on the FBI to discuss the bureau’s public disclosure of information related to high-profile investigations.

Cohen
Failed 12-17
In the Constitution Subcommittee section, amends the “Free Speech” item to discuss threats to the freedom of the press.

Johnson
Failed 11-17
In the Constitution Subcommittee section, adds new item on false allegations of voter fraud.

Cicilline
Failed 10-15
In the Constitution Subcommittee section, amends the “Religious Liberty” section to discuss entry into the United States.

Raskin
Failed 10-14
In the Full Committee section, adds discussion of the foreign emoluments clause to “Protecting Congress’ Constitutional Powers.”

Jayapal
Failed 11-15
In the Immigration Subcommittee section, amends the “Refugee Program” item to discuss the rigorous vetting of refugees.

Schneider
Failed 12-18
In the Immigration Subcommittee section, adds a new item on the deportation of Dreamers.

Swalwell
Failed 11-17
In the Full Committee section, adds a new item on DOJ’s investigation into Russian influence on 2016 election.

Swalwell
Failed 12-19
In the Full Committee section, adds new item on background checks for security clearances.

Swalwell
Failed
In the Constitution Subcommittee section, amends the “War on Terrorism” item to discuss the limits of congressionally authorized military force.



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CONYERS Speaks On The Need To Study Impact Of Slavery

As part of #BlackHistoryMonth, I spoke at briefing regarding my bill, H.R. 40, A Commission to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African-Americans Act. H.R. 40 is a crucial piece of legislation because it goes beyond exploring the economic implications of slavery and segregation. It is a holistic bill in the sense that it seeks to establish a commission to also examine the moral and social implications of #slavery. — at United States Capitol.

#FosterCare #Adoption #ChildWelfare 

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115th CONGRESS
1st Session
H. R. 40

To address the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality, and inhumanity of slavery in the United States and the 13 American colonies between 1619 and 1865 and to establish a commission to study and consider a national apology and proposal for reparations for the institution of slavery, its subsequent de jure and de facto racial and economic discrimination against African-Americans, and the impact of these forces on living African-Americans, to make recommendations to the Congress on appropriate remedies, and for other purposes.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
January 3, 2017
Mr. Conyers (for himself, Mr. Serrano, Mr. Al Green of Texas, Ms. Norton, Mr. Hastings, Mr. Ellison, Mrs. Beatty, Mr. Lewis of Georgia, Mr. Nadler, Mr. Danny K. Davis of Illinois, Mr. Clay, Mr. Gutiérrez, Mr. Cohen, Mr. Cummings, Mr. Meeks, Ms. Schakowsky, Ms. Jackson Lee, and Ms. Lee) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

A BILL
To address the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality, and inhumanity of slavery in the United States and the 13 American colonies between 1619 and 1865 and to establish a commission to study and consider a national apology and proposal for reparations for the institution of slavery, its subsequent de jure and de facto racial and economic discrimination against African-Americans, and the impact of these forces on living African-Americans, to make recommendations to the Congress on appropriate remedies, and for other purposes.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the “Commission to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African-Americans Act”.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSE.
(a) Findings.—The Congress finds that—
(1) approximately 4,000,000 Africans and their descendants were enslaved in the United States and colonies that became the United States from 1619 to 1865;
(2) the institution of slavery was constitutionally and statutorily sanctioned by the Government of the United States from 1789 through 1865;
(3) the slavery that flourished in the United States constituted an immoral and inhumane deprivation of Africans’ life, liberty, African citizenship rights, and cultural heritage, and denied them the fruits of their own labor;
(4) a preponderance of scholarly, legal, community evidentiary documentation and popular culture markers constitute the basis for inquiry into the on-going effects of the institution of slavery and its legacy of persistent systemic structures of discrimination on living African-Americans and society in the United States; and
(5) following the abolition of slavery the United States Government, at the Federal, State, and local level, continued to perpetuate, condone and often profit from practices that continued to brutalize and disadvantage African-Americans, including share cropping, convict leasing, Jim Crow, redlining, unequal education, and disproportionate treatment at the hands of the criminal justice system; and
(6) as a result of the historic and continued discrimination, African-Americans continue to suffer debilitating economic, educational, and health hardships including but not limited to; having nearly 1,000,000 Black people incarcerated; an unemployment rate more than twice the current White unemployment rate; and an average of less than 116 of the wealth of White families, a disparity which has worsened, not improved over time.
(b) Purpose.—The purpose of this Act is to establish a commission to study and develop Reparation proposals for African-Americans as a result of—
(1) the institution of slavery, including both the Trans-Atlantic and the domestic “trade” which existed from 1565 in colonial Florida and from 1619 through 1865 within the other colonies that became the United States, and which included the Federal and State governments which constitutionally and statutorily supported the institution of slavery;
(2) the de jure and de facto discrimination against freed slaves and their descendants from the end of the Civil War to the present, including economic, political, educational, and social discrimination;
(3) the lingering negative effects of the institution of slavery and the discrimination described in paragraphs (1) and (2) on living African-Americans and on society in the United States;
(4) the manner in which textual and digital instructional resources and technologies are being used to deny the inhumanity of slavery and the crime against humanity of people of African descent in the United States;
(5) the role of Northern complicity in the Southern based institution of slavery;
(6) the direct benefits to societal institutions, public and private, including higher education, corporations, religious and associational;
(7) and thus, recommend appropriate ways to educate the American public of the Commission’s findings;
(8) and thus, recommend appropriate remedies in consideration of the Commission’s findings on the matters described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), and (6); and
(9) submit to the Congress the results of such examination, together with such recommendations.
SEC. 3. ESTABLISHMENT AND DUTIES.
(a) Establishment.—There is established the Commission to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African-Americans (hereinafter in this Act referred to as the “Commission”).
(b) Duties.—The Commission shall perform the following duties:
(1) Identify, compile and synthesize the relevant corpus of evidentiary documentation of the institution of slavery which existed within the United States and the colonies that became the United States from 1619 through 1865. The Commission’s documentation and examination shall include but not be limited to the facts related to—
(A) the capture and procurement of Africans;
(B) the transport of Africans to the United States and the colonies that became the United States for the purpose of enslavement, including their treatment during transport;
(C) the sale and acquisition of Africans as chattel property in interstate and intrastate commerce;
(D) the treatment of African slaves in the colonies and the United States, including the deprivation of their freedom, exploitation of their labor, and destruction of their culture, language, religion, and families; and
(E) the extensive denial of humanity, sexual abuse and the chatellization of persons.
(2) The role which the Federal and State governments of the United States supported the institution of slavery in constitutional and statutory provisions, including the extent to which such governments prevented, opposed, or restricted efforts of formerly enslaved Africans and their descendents to repatriate to their homeland.
(3) The Federal and State laws that discriminated against formerly enslaved Africans and their descendents who were deemed United States citizens from 1868 to the present.
(4) The other forms of discrimination in the public and private sectors against freed African slaves and their descendents who were deemed United States citizens from 1868 to the present, including redlining, educational funding discrepancies, and predatory financial practices.
(5) The lingering negative effects of the institution of slavery and the matters described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), and (6) on living African-Americans and on society in the United States.
(6) Recommend appropriate ways to educate the American public of the Commission’s findings.
(7) Recommend appropriate remedies in consideration of the Commission’s findings on the matters described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), and (6). In making such recommendations, the Commission shall address among other issues, the following questions:
(A) How such recommendations comport with international standards of remedy for wrongs and injuries caused by the State, that include full reparations and special measures, as understood by various relevant international protocols, laws, and findings.
(B) How the Government of the United States will offer a formal apology on behalf of the people of the United States for the perpetration of gross human rights violations and crimes against humanity on African slaves and their descendants.
(C) How Federal laws and policies that continue to disproportionately and negatively affect African-Americans as a group, and those that purpetuate the lingering effects, materially and psycho-social, can be eliminated.
(D) How the injuries resulting from matters described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), and (6) can be reversed and provide appropriate policies, programs, projects and recommendations for the purpose of reversing the injuries.
(E) How, in consideration of the Commission’s findings, any form of compensation to the descendants of enslaved African is calculated.
(F) What form of compensation should be awarded, through what instrumentalities and who should be eligible for such compensation.
(G) How, in consideration of the Commission’s findings, any other forms of rehabilitation or restitution to African descendants is warranted and what the form and scope of those measures should take.
(c) Report To Congress.—The Commission shall submit a written report of its findings and recommendations to the Congress not later than the date which is one year after the date of the first meeting of the Commission held pursuant to section 4(c).
SEC. 4. MEMBERSHIP.
(a) Number And Appointment.—(1) The Commission shall be composed of 13 members, who shall be appointed, within 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, as follows:
(A) Three members shall be appointed by the President.
(B) Three members shall be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives.
(C) One member shall be appointed by the President pro tempore of the Senate.
(D) Six members shall be selected from the major civil society and reparations organizations that have historically championed the cause of reparatory justice.
(2) All members of the Commission shall be persons who are especially qualified to serve on the Commission by virtue of their education, training, activism or experience, particularly in the field of African-American studies and reparatory justice.
(b) Terms.—The term of office for members shall be for the life of the Commission. A vacancy in the Commission shall not affect the powers of the Commission and shall be filled in the same manner in which the original appointment was made.
(c) First Meeting.—The President shall call the first meeting of the Commission within 120 days after the date of the enactment of this Act or within 30 days after the date on which legislation is enacted making appropriations to carry out this Act, whichever date is later.
(d) Quorum.—Seven members of the Commission shall constitute a quorum, but a lesser number may hold hearings.
(e) Chair And Vice Chair.—The Commission shall elect a Chair and Vice Chair from among its members. The term of office of each shall be for the life of the Commission.
(f) Compensation.—(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), each member of the Commission shall receive compensation at the daily equivalent of the annual rate of basic pay payable for GS–18 of the General Schedule under section 5332 of title 5, United States Code, for each day, including travel time, during which he or she is engaged in the actual performance of duties vested in the Commission.
(2) A member of the Commission who is a full-time officer or employee of the United States or a Member of Congress shall receive no additional pay, allowances, or benefits by reason of his or her service to the Commission.
(3) All members of the Commission shall be reimbursed for travel, subsistence, and other necessary expenses incurred by them in the performance of their duties to the extent authorized by chapter 57 of title 5, United States Code.
SEC. 5. POWERS OF THE COMMISSION.
(a) Hearings And Sessions.—The Commission may, for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act, hold such hearings and sit and act at such times and at such places in the United States, and request the attendance and testimony of such witnesses and the production of such books, records, correspondence, memoranda, papers, and documents, as the Commission considers appropriate. The Commission may invoke the aid of an appropriate United States district court to require, by subpoena or otherwise, such attendance, testimony, or production.
(b) Powers Of Subcommittees And Members.—Any subcommittee or member of the Commission may, if authorized by the Commission, take any action which the Commission is authorized to take by this section.
(c) Obtaining Official Data.—The Commission may acquire directly from the head of any department, agency, or instrumentality of the executive branch of the Government, available information which the Commission considers useful in the discharge of its duties. All departments, agencies, and instrumentalities of the executive branch of the Government shall cooperate with the Commission with respect to such information and shall furnish all information requested by the Commission to the extent permitted by law.
SEC. 6. ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS.
(a) Staff.—The Commission may, without regard to section 5311(b) of title 5, United States Code, appoint and fix the compensation of such personnel as the Commission considers appropriate.
(b) Applicability Of Certain Civil Service Laws.—The staff of the Commission may be appointed without regard to the provisions of title 5, United States Code, governing appointments in the competitive service, and without regard to the provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of such title relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates, except that the compensation of any employee of the Commission may not exceed a rate equal to the annual rate of basic pay payable for GS–18 of the General Schedule under section 5332 of title 5, United States Code.
(c) Experts And Consultants.—The Commission may procure the services of experts and consultants in accordance with the provisions of section 3109(b) of title 5, United States Code, but at rates for individuals not to exceed the daily equivalent of the highest rate payable under section 5332 of such title.
(d) Administrative Support Services.—The Commission may enter into agreements with the Administrator of General Services for procurement of financial and administrative services necessary for the discharge of the duties of the Commission. Payment for such services shall be made by reimbursement from funds of the Commission in such amounts as may be agreed upon by the Chairman of the Commission and the Administrator.
(e) Contracts.—The Commission may—
(1) procure supplies, services, and property by contract in accordance with applicable laws and regulations and to the extent or in such amounts as are provided in appropriations Acts; and
(2) enter into contracts with departments, agencies, and instrumentalities of the Federal Government, State agencies, and private firms, institutions, and agencies, for the conduct of research or surveys, the preparation of reports, and other activities necessary for the discharge of the duties of the Commission, to the extent or in such amounts as are provided in appropriations Acts.
SEC. 7. TERMINATION.
The Commission shall terminate 90 days after the date on which the Commission submits its report to the Congress under section 3(c).
SEC. 8. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.
To carry out the provisions of this Act, there are authorized to be appropriated $12,000,000.

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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Opening Statement of Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. “Adoption of the Committee Authorization and Oversight Plan” House Committee on the Judiciary


Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman. The “Authorization and Oversight Plan” before us this morning is not binding on the Committee.  It is, instead, an informal outline of our oversight priorities for the Congress to come.

Mr. Chairman, I want you to know that I have always appreciated both your effort—and that of your staff—to reach consensus on the Committee’s oversight plan. Unfortunately, I fear that there are several urgent matters within our jurisdiction that will not be discussed on a timely basis if we do not bring them up today.

For example, on November 30, 2016, every Democratic member of this Committee wrote you to ask for hearings on the many conflict-of-interest statutes that—notwithstanding the President’s claims otherwise—apply to President Trump, his family, and members of his cabinet. On January 12, 2017, every Democratic member of this Committee wrote again to renew our request in the new Congress. 

To date, however, no such hearings have been scheduled.  We must discuss this problem, and we will begin to do so today.

Similarly, the Majority has been conspicuously silent with respect to report after report connecting various figures in the President’s inner circle to the government of Vladimir Putin.

The FBI is the lead agency on any criminal or counterintelligence operation that may or may not be aimed at President Trump and his associates. We already know the unanimous conclusion of the Intelligence Community: Russia engaged in a massive campaign to influence the last election, and to tilt the outcome in favor of President Trump.

And we learned earlier this week that the Department of Justice played a lead role in notifying White House counsel that former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn had lied about his contact with the Russian Ambassador about sanctions imposed by the Obama Administration in response to Russia’s interference in the election.
           
The fact that General Flynn has resigned does little to resolve a number of questions that this Committee has a responsibility to ask—especially after last night’s revelation that the Trump campaign was in direct communication with Russian intelligence operatives—and we will begin to ask some of those questions today.

On these and other matters, I look forward to our robust discussion today.  I thank the Chairman, and I yield back.

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The House Judiciary Committee will consider the House Judiciary Republicans’ Oversight Plan for the 115thCongress.


Democratic members of the committee plan to offer amendments on Trump Administration contacts with the Russian government, President Trump’s ongoing conflicts of interest, and other matters that the Majority chose not to prioritize in their proposed oversight plan.

Let’s see if House Judiciary Republicans really want to do their jobs.   


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