House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler today said Robert Mueller’s report presents “very substantial evidence” that President Donald Trump is “guilty of high crimes and misdemeanours” – an impeachable offense.
“We have to…let Mueller present those facts to the American people, and then see where we go from there, because the administration must be held accountable,” Mr Nadler, whose committee would lead impeachment proceedings, said on “Fox News Sunday”.
Mr Mueller, the former special counsel for the Department of Justice and former director of the FBI, will testify before Congress on July 24 after House Democrats issued a subpoena for his appearance.
Earlier this year, Mr Mueller concluded a nearly two-year-long investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said today most Americans haven’t read the dense 448-page Mueller report.
“If we had had confidence that the President clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so,” Mr Mueller said.
“We did not, however, make a determination as to whether the President did commit a crime.”
The former special counsel’s probe, which also investigated possible collusion, found that members of the Trump campaign knew they would benefit from Russia’s illegal actions to influence the election, but did not take criminal steps to help.
Mr Mueller delivered a road map of how the investigation played out and the possible role that Congress could play in holding Mr Trump accountable.
He highlighted how the “Constitution requires a process other than” the criminal justice system to hold officeholders accountable, a clear signal his obstruction investigation into Mr Trump could be carried on by Congress.
More than 80 House Democrats have called for starting an impeachment inquiry into the President – the first step in a lengthy process, but House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Mr Nadler have so far resisted the pressure to open an inquiry.
The impeachment clause in Article II of the US Constitution outlines the process of removing a president, which begins with a vote in the House of Representatives.
Offenses that could prompt impeachment are treason, bribery or other “high crimes and misdemeanours”.
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