July 12, 2019

Fredrickson Testifies on Constitutional Processes for Addressing Presidential Misconduct

ACS Staff

The House of Representatives is exercising its constitutionally mandated oversight responsibilities with Special Counsel Mueller’s much-anticipated testimony later this month. On July 12, ACS President Caroline Fredrickson testified before the House Committee on the Judiciary during a hearing titled, "Lessons from the Mueller Report III: Constitutional Processes for Addressing Presidential Misconduct.” Watch the hearing here.

Fredrickson described Congress’s oversight options, including, but not limited to, impeachment proceedings:

The final report issued by Special Counsel Robert Mueller on his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election delivered several chilling conclusions: (1) Russia conducted wide-ranging attacks on our nation’s election system; (2) both before and after public reports of the Russian attacks, the Trump campaign had multiple contacts with Russian nationals and did not report these interactions to U.S. authorities; and (3) there is substantial evidence that President Donald Trump repeatedly attempted to thwart the Department of Justice’s efforts to investigate the Russian attacks, including through his unheeded requests to the White House Counsel to fire the Special Counsel and create a false paper trail and make public misrepresentations regarding this incident.

These troubling findings and other public accounts of alleged presidential corruption demand and are rightfully receiving scrutiny by this Committee and other congressional committees.  As this Committee knows well, the investigations the Committee is pursuing in this vein are well-grounded in Congress’s Article I powers and the jurisdictional directives of the House Rules. Unfortunately, instead of providing information to enable Congress to do its job, the President has said he will resist all congressional subpoenas, and his lawyers have requested that this Committee “discontinue” its investigation and have made the extraordinary and unfounded claim that the Committee lacks authority to investigate these matters.

In light of the Administration’s misguided public positions on this Committee’s oversight responsibilities, I appreciate the opportunity to participate in the hearing the Committee is holding to set the record straight on congressional avenues for addressing presidential misconduct."

Read Fredrickson's full testimony (PDF).

Related ACS resources on the Mueller investigation:

Former U.S. Attorney Barb McQuade: Five Things to Watch for When Mueller Testifies

Georgetown University Law Professor Victoria Nourse: Oversight Is a Constitutional Necessity, Not a Luxury

Ohio State University Law Professor Peter Shane: The Fatal Flaw in the Argument for McGahn's Testimonial Immunity