WASHINGTON – The Justice Department told a federal judge that a House committee investigating President Donald Trump is not entitled to grand jury evidence from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, saying it has failed to explain which specific testimony it needs access to or how it would help its investigation into potential obstruction by the president. “There is this generalized notion that this is an important matter because of impeachment and, therefore, (the committee) should have access to everything,” Elizabeth Shapiro, an attorney in the Justice Department’s Civil Division, said during a two-hour hearing in federal court Tuesday. “It also needs to be particularized, and they shouldn’t get a pass on that because of impeachment.” U.S. District Court Judge Beryl Howell heard arguments on whether the House Judiciary Committee should receive the underlying grand jury evidence behind Mueller’s report on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. The panel subpoenaed the evidence as part of the wide-ranging impeachment investigation of Trump, who calls the inquiry a partisan witch hunt. The Judiciary Committee is focusing on potential obstruction of justice, as described in 10 episodes in the Mueller report. But Attorney General William Barr redacted grand jury evidence from the report and argued against… Read full this story
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