Kerry Picket will be attending today’s hearing titled “Lessons from the Mueller Report: Presidential Obstruction and Other Crimes” at 2 pm ET. House Judiciary Committee ranking member Doug Collins on Friday accused Jerry Nadler of scheduling a “mock impeachment inquiry” and not a legitimate congressional oversight hearing.
While Mueller will NOT be a witness, the “hearing” will include testimony from Watergate key witness John Dean along with other legal experts to drive the obstruction narrative for Democrats.
In a letter to the chairman, Collins laid out that House Judiciary Democrats scheduled what appears to be an impeachment inquiry without officially launching an impeachment inquiry and are therefore not abiding by long-standing House Rules:
The fact you are attempting to make the case for starting an impeachment inquiry has no bearing on the applicability of the Rules. Outside of such an inquiry, Members are prohibited from accusing the President of a crime or alluding to potentially impeachable offenses. Jefferson’s Manual further states:
Although wide latitude is permitted in a debate on a proposition to impeach the President, Members must abstain from language personally offensive; and Members must abstain from comparisons to the personal conduct of sitting Members of the House or Senate. Furthermore, when impeachment is not the pending business on the floor, Members may not refer to evidence of alleged impeachable offenses by the President contained in a communication from an independent counsel pending before a House committee, although they may refer to the communication, itself, within the confines of proper decorum in debate, and may not otherwise suggest that the President has done something worthy of censure or impeachment.
“Outside of impeachment proceedings -which is clearly the case here- it is out of order for a Member of Congress, in debate, to engage in personalities with the President or express an opinion, even a third-party opinion, accusing the President of a crime. The Rules are clear on this point,” Collins wrote. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Nadler have differed over when Democrats should begin impeachment proceedings against President Trump. While Pelosi prefers a slower multi-committee investigative route, Nadler has continued to pressure the speaker to allow an impeachment inquiry.
Kerry will have a full report after sitting in on the hearing today.