The House Judiciary Committee is kicking off the fall congressional session with a bang.
One of the powerful House panel’s first orders of business upon returning from recess this week will be to vote on formalizing its investigation into whether President Trump should be impeached, Chairman Jerry Nadler said Monday.
The vote, which is set for Thursday, will spell out the parameters of a committee inquiry into whether it should recommend articles of impeachment to the full House.
The committee will do so by passing a resolution on “investigative procedures."
While Nadler (D-N.Y.) has previously said that his committee is exploring the possibility of impeachment as part of a wide-ranging probe into Trump’s alleged crimes, the resolution marks the official launch of a formal impeachment inquiry.
The judiciary panel passed similar resolutions at the outset of the impeachment investigations into President Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton.
A draft of the five-page resolution provided to the Daily News includes language allowing Nadler to convene subcommittee or full committee hearings on specific pieces of evidence.
The resolution also gives committee attorneys an hour to question witnesses in addition to the time always allotted to committee members.
Additionally, there’s a section of the resolution that stipulates the committee can only handle grand jury information behind closed doors and another portion that says Trump’s attorneys will be able to respond in writing to any testimony or evidence that comes up in hearings.
White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham ripped Monday’s announcement as “more of the same from the Democrats."
“They should be focusing on the needs of our country. Instead, their obsessive vendetta against this president continues,” Grisham said in a statement.
Jay Sekulow, one of Trump’s personal attorneys, offered a similar sentiment, saying in a text, “This is nothing but more presidential harassment. We will respond appropriately, if necessary.”
The Democratic-led impeachment investigation is primarily focused on Trump’s alleged obstruction of former special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.
In his report, Mueller presented 10 individual instances in which Trump allegedly obstructed justice. However, in part due to longstanding Justice Department policy shielding sitting presidents from criminal indictments, Mueller wrapped up his investigation without charging Trump.
Nadler made clear in a statement that he intends to pick up where Mueller left off.
“President Trump went to great lengths to obstruct special counsel Mueller’s investigation, including the president’s attempts to remove the special counsel and encourage witnesses to lie and to destroy or conceal evidence," Nadler said. “Anyone else who did this would face federal criminal prosecution.”
In addition to possible obstruction, the judiciary committee has in recent weeks expanded the scope of its impeachment probe to include Trump’s possible violations of the constitution’s emoluments clause as it relates to his profiting off of the presidency by using it to promote his namesake business empire.