The House Judiciary Committee on Thursday broadened its investigation into President Donald Trump and possible obstruction of justice, authorizing subpoenas to a dozen individuals that included the President’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner. The committee also authorized subpoenas to current and former Trump administration officials related to the “zero-tolerance” immigration policy that led to the separation last year of migrant families who crossed the southern border illegally. The vote was approved on party lines, 21-12.
Thursday’s dual subpoena authorizations signal the Judiciary Committee is ratcheting up its probes into the Trump administration ahead of the panel’s high-profile hearing next week with former special counsel Robert Mueller. With the 12 subpoenas Thursday, the committee has now authorized subpoenas to 17 individuals in total. House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler has issued subpoenas to three of those officials, along with subpoenas to the Justice Department for the full Mueller report and to Mueller himself to compel the special counsel’s appearance next week.
At Thursday’s vote, Mueller’s testimony loomed over the proceedings. Many of the officials on the subpoena list are featured prominently in the special counsel’s report, and Democrats say they need to speak to them as they debate whether to begin an impeachment inquiry. At the same time, Republicans publicly aired their complaints over the planned format of the hearing, where not all members of the House Judiciary Committee will get to question Mueller next week. Several Republicans accused Nadler, a Democrat from New York, of ceding to the House Intelligence Committee when agreeing to allow 22 lawmakers on the 40-plus member Judiciary Committee to question Mueller.