Tuesday, October 24, 2017

CONYERS & CUMMINGS Respond To Partisan GOP Investigation OF Former FBI Director Comey's Actions During 2016 Election

Top Dems:  New GOP Investigation Ignores Russia’s National Security Threat;
Uses Hillary Clinton to Distract From Lack Of Trump Oversight

Washington, D.C. (Oct. 24, 2017)—Today, Rep. John Conyers, Jr., the Ranking Member of the House Committee on the Judiciary and Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, the Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, issued the following statement in response to an announcement that Chairmen Trey Gowdy and Bob Goodlatte are opening a partisan Republican investigation into decisions made by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Department of Justice (DOJ) in 2016:

“This new investigation is  a massive diversion to distract from the lack of Republican oversight of the Trump Administration and the national security threat that Russia poses. Ten months into the Trump Administration and House Republicans still have not held a single substantive oversight hearing on clear abuses by the President or his top aides.  That amounts to ten months of abdication of responsibility—a near total failure to question, investigate, or challenge the President or the White House, including on grave allegations of obstruction of justice.

“The Russian government continues to represent a clear and present threat to the United States and our democratic system, and we are the targets of near-constant cyberattacks by foreign adversaries.  Yet House Republicans have taken no concrete steps to secure our next election.  Apparently, House Republicans are more concerned about Jim Comey than Vladimir Putin.   

“If Republicans want to know why Director Comey discussed the investigation of Secretary Clinton publicly, maybe they should ask their own former Republican Chairman, Jason Chaffetz, who harassed the FBI for months to reveal public details about the case.  Rep. Chaffetz hauled Director Comey before the Oversight Committee to demand his public testimony, issued twelve unilateral subpoenas to Comey and others to force the production of internal investigative documents, and held five ‘emergency hearings’ directly before the election to harm Secretary Clinton’s presidential bid—all while completely ignoring the extremely troubling reports about Donald Trump and his campaign’s connections to the Russians. We must protect our democracy.”

Democratic Members have made repeated requests to Republican leadership to investigate these issues.

Democrats on the Judiciary Committee have written to Chairman Goodlatte 11 timesto request oversight hearings. These letters have gone unanswered and House Judiciary Republicans have so far blocked several resolutions of inquiry from reaching the House floor.

On May 16, 2017, all of the Democrats on the Oversight and Judiciary Committees sent a letter to Chairmen Gowdy and Goodlatte requesting that they launch an “immediate joint investigation” into whether President Trump and his top officials were attempting to obstruct the criminal, counter-intelligence, and oversight investigations conducted by the FBI, Department of Justice, and Congress into members of his presidential campaign and their contacts with Russian officials.

In addition, on January 12, 2017, the top Ranking Democratic Members of 22 House Committees sent a letter to Speaker Paul Ryan requesting that Congress evaluate all of then-President-Elect Trump’s global financial entanglements for conflicts of interest and constitutional violations—including in particular those involving Russian investors, business interests, and development partners.  

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