New impeachment report calls evidence against Trump solid

Copy of the Articles of Impeachment, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019 in Washington. House Democrats announced they are pushing ahead with two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump – abuse of power and obstruction of Congress – charging he corrupted the U.S. election process and endangered national security in his dealings with Ukraine. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP photo via Courthouse News)

WASHINGTON (CN) — Calling for articles of impeachment to proceed expeditiously for a vote by the full chamber, the House Judiciary Committee detailed its findings from weeks of hearings in a 658-page report late Sunday.

“There is an instinct in any investigation to seek more evidence, interview more witnesses, and turn over every remaining stone. But there also comes a point when the evidence is powerful enough, and the danger of delay is great enough, that inaction is irresponsible,” says the report, which the committee shared Monday morning in an email. “And every indication, every piece of evidence, supports that the president will abuse his power again.”

The committee report is split into separate sections on the two articles against President Donald Trump charging him with obstruction of Congress and abuse of power.

“In the history of the Republic, no president has ever claimed the unilateral prerogative to categorically and indiscriminately defy a House impeachment inquiry. Nor has any president ever directed his administration to do so,” the report states. “President Trump’s direction to defy House subpoenas constituted an assault on the Impeachment Clause itself — and thus on our Constitution’s final answer to corrupt presidents.”

The report additionally includes dissenting views of the Judiciary Committee’s findings, signed by House Republicans. Some Republican members signed a flat statement of disagreement, which was attached to the report, while others presented pages of testimony and a dissenting view. Some of these views were submitted weeks prior with the report from the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.

Representative Andy Biggs, R-Ariz., wrote Sunday that he felt Democrats would “never give a neutral interpretation of the facts where President Trump is concerned.” Representative Guy Reschenthaler, R-Pa., submitted a one-sentence agreement Friday to the dissenting views expressed by Representative Doug Collins of Georgia, the ranking Republican on the Democrat-controlled Judiciary Committee.

House Democrats insisted in their report, however, that the process was fair for both sides to investigate the alleged presidential misconduct. The hearings afforded both sides “procedural protections that were consistent with or in some instances exceeded those afforded to presidents Clinton and Nixon,” the release states.

White House counsel Pat Cipollone turned down the committee’s invitation to attend the proceedings in October, calling the path taken by the House against Trump dangerous and unprecedented.

House Democrats defended the transparency of their proceedings.

“The House’s inquiry was conducted with maximal transparency: transcripts of all interviews and depositions were made public, and HPSCI and the Judiciary Committee held seven days of public hearings,” the report states, using an abbreviation for the Intelligence Committee.

All documentary evidence relied on in and HPSCI’s report has been made available to president Trump, and much of it has been made public. The president’s decision to reject these opportunities to participate affirms that his principal objective was to obstruct the House’s inquiry rather than assist in its full consideration of all relevant evidence.”