Nadler pushes back against Barr on terms of testimony – POLITICO
The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee is warning Attorney General William Barr not to try to dictate the terms of his testimony on the Russia investigation this week.
“The witness is not going to tell the committee how to conduct its hearing, period,” the chairman, Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.), told CNN on Sunday.
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Barr is scheduled to testify to the Judiciary Committee on Thursday about special counsel Robert Mueller’s 448-page report on the investigation, a redacted version of which was released earlier this month. He is also expected to appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday.
Nadler wants to allow each committee member a five-minute round of questioning. A key point of contention has arisen over Nadler’s wanting to allow for another round of questioning of 30 minutes for each party’s committee counsels. The chairman also proposed that the panel go into closed session to discuss the redacted sections of the report.
Barr has rejected both proposals, according to CNN, which cited an unidentified committee source.
Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-Pa.), a member of the Judiciary Committee, said Nadler’s proposed structure for the hearing was “not unprecedented.”
“It is not up to Attorney General Barr to tell our committee how to operate, and will I be puzzled if he actually decides not to show,” Dean said Sunday on “CNN Newsroom With Fredricka Whitfield.”
If Barr doesn’t appear on Thursday, Dean said, the committee is ready to “fully use our subpoena power.”
“The chairman has subpoena power, and we’ll have to go to a court of law and either hold him in contempt or have him come in, but I hope that cooler heads prevail,” Dean said.
Nadler has subpoenaed the Justice Department to provide an unredacted version of Mueller’s report, along with its underlying grand jury evidence and testimony, by May 1. He also sent a letter to Mueller asking the special counsel to testify before the Judiciary Committee by May 23.