US lawmakers launch sweeping probe of Trump
The president’s two adult sons — Donald Trump Jr and Eric Trump — and son-in-law and senior advisor Jared Kushner were among the recipients of these letters.Updated: Mar 05, 2019 00:00 IST
A US congressional panel launched Monday a sweeping investigation into President Donald Trump’s administration, family businesses, foundation and presidential inauguration committee for possible obstruction of justice, corruption and abuse of power.
The judiciary committee of the House of Representatives, which is dominated by Democrats, sent letters demanding documents to more than 80 family members, political contacts, business contacts and institutions connected to the president.
The president’s two adult sons — Donald Trump Jr and Eric Trump — and son-in-law and senior advisor Jared Kushner were among the recipients of these letters.
Documents sought include White House communications regarding the firing of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn for lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russians, the dismissal of FBI director James Comey and about a Trump Tower meeting that Trump Jr had with a Russian lawyer who had promised political dirt on Hillary Clinton.
Letter recipients have two weeks to respond.
“We will act quickly to gather this information, assess the evidence, and follow the facts where they lead with full transparency with the American people,” Congressman Gerrold Nadler, chairman of the committee, said in a statement. “This is a critical time for our nation, and we have a responsibility to investigate these matters and hold hearings for the public to have all the facts. That is exactly what we intend to do.”.
This investigation it the broadest yet of the president and comes amidst an intensifying face-off between him and the Democratic-led House, which conducted a high-profile public hearing last week at which Michale Cohen, a former personnel attorney of the president and fixer, called his former boss a “racist, a conman and a cheat”.
President Trump is fighting back. He blamed the hearing for the abrupt end of his second summit meeting with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un in Hanoi, Vietnam last week “For the Democrats to interview in open hearings a convicted liar & fraudster, at the same time as the very important Nuclear Summit with North Korea, is perhaps a new low in American politics and may have contributed to the ‘walk’, ” he wrote on Twitter Sunday. “Never done when a president is overseas. Shame!”
He also railed against the Russia probe and House probes and hearings in a speech Sunday at the annual meeting of conservative body. “This phony thing,” Trump said about the Russia probe by Special Counsel Robert Mueller., “looks like it’s dying so they don’t have anything with Russia there, no collusion. So now they go in and morph into ‘Let’s inspect every deal he’s ever done. We’re going to go into his finances. We’re going to check his deals. We’re going to check’ — these people are sick.”
First Published: Mar 05, 2019 00:00 IST