If William Barr continues to defy subpoenas, Watergate offers House Democrats several options
In this fight, not acting to preserve its powers as a co-equal branch of government could relegate Congress to subservience in perpetuity.
The chairman’s words were prophetic: As an independent ground for impeachment, Article III held that Nixon should be impeached for refusing to produce tapes and records and thereby interfering with congressional exercise of its power of impeachment mandated by the constitution. That article was approved by a vote of 21-17 in July.
In its final report to the House in 1974, the committee explained why a president should be impeached for defying its subpoenas: “Unless the defiance of the committee’s subpoenas under these circumstances is considered grounds for impeachment, it is difficult to conceive of any president acknowledging that he is obligated to supply the relevant evidence necessary for Congress to exercise its constitutional responsibility in an impeachment proceeding.”
In 2019, the committee’s warning about what a future president may do has come to pass. Congress must act decisively to preserve its constitutional authority.
May 3, 2019, 4:38 AM EDT By Michael Conway, Former counsel, U.S. House Judiciary Committee
Michael Conway served as counsel for the U.S. House Judiciary Committee in the impeachment inquiry of President Richard M. Nixon in 1974. In that role, he assisted in drafting the committee’s final report to the House of Representatives in support of the three Articles of Impeachment adopted by the committee. Conway is a graduate of Yale Law School, a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and a retired partner of Foley & Lardner LLP in Chicago.
_________________________ Trump asked if he could pardon himself!