Rachel Maddow shed light on an apparent Republican effort to delay Robert Mueller‘s investigation by delaying the formation of their side of the House Intelligence Committee.
According to Maddow, the GOP refusal to name their committee members for two weeks held up the release of key transcripts that Mueller could have used to bring further charges against anyone other than Roger Stone or Michael Cohen – like, say, Donald Trump Jr.
“The earliest date Mueller can get those official transcripts is next Tuesday, February 5th – more than a full month after this Congress was sworn in and supposedly starting its work,” the MSNBC host said. “The delay from the Republicans at least bought them another month.”
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) January 31, 2019
The intelligence committee has been unable to hold the required vote to release those transcripts to Mueller because of the two-week-long delay in Republicans naming any members to the committee, the intelligence committee hasn’t been able to hold that vote. So Democrats name their members two weeks ago. Republicans haven’t. They’ve just been sitting on it until finally today. And again, whether or not Mueller wants to bring any further charges on the basis of this testimony to Congress, whether Mueller and his prosecutors want to charge anybody other than Roger Stone and Michael Cohen with lying to Congress on the basis of what they said to the intelligence committee, it would appear that Mueller and his prosecutors can’t do that until they formally get official transcripts released to them from the committee. And the official transcripts can’t go to Mueller until the committee votes to release those transcripts to him for that purpose. And the committee cannot take that vote until they are formally constituted as a committee, and they can’t formally constitute themselves as a committee until they have all their members, and they only got all their members today. Having all their members as of today means they will finally be able to hold their first meeting as a committee three business days from now. In magical congressional calendar days, that means the earliest possible date at which these witness transcripts can be sent to Robert Mueller, just in case he wants to use them to bring more criminal charges, the earliest date Mueller can get those official transcripts is next Tuesday, February 5th. More than a full month after this Congress was sworn in and supposedly starting its work. The delay from the Republicans at least bought them another month.
Republicans are grasping at straws to defend Trump
While much of the focus of the past two years has (rightly) been on Donald Trump‘s attempts to obstruct Robert Mueller‘s investigation, Republicans in Congress have also been doing their part to undermine the special counsel probe.
When they had control of the House of Representatives, they didn’t use their power to hold the president accountable for his potential crimes. They didn’t conduct serious investigations of their own. Instead, they used it to undercut and discredit the Mueller investigation and shamelessly protect the president of the United States.
With Democrats now in control of the House, Republicans are grasping at straws to delay the roundhouse kick of oversight that Democratic-led committees plan to bring down on the president.
As Democrats prepare to ramp up their investigations, the GOP is only delaying the inevitable.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.