Meadows threatens to force a vote on Rosenstein impeachment

Meadows threatens to force a vote on Rosenstein impeachment

Rep. Mark MeadowsMark MeadowsMeadows says Trump World looking to 'move forward in a real way' Trump takes two punches from GOP Watchdog urges Justice to probe Trump, Meadows for attempting to 'weaponize' DOJ MORE (R-N.C.) on Wednesday night threatened to force a vote on the GOP resolution to impeach Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod RosensteinWashington still needs more transparency House Judiciary to probe DOJ's seizure of data from lawmakers, journalists The Hill's Morning Report - Biden-Putin meeting to dominate the week MORE

Meadows told Fox News host Laura Ingraham that any lawmaker can force the issue to the House floor without leadership support by offering the resolution as a "privileged motion," meaning the House must vote on it within two days.

"Certainly, we hope it doesn’t have to come to that," Meadows said on Ingraham's show "The Ingraham Angle."

ADVERTISEMENT

Meadows, along with Rep. Jim JordanJames (Jim) Daniel Jordan58 percent say Jan. 6 House committee is biased: poll Kinzinger supports Jan. 6 panel subpoenas for Republicans, including McCarthy Jordan acknowledges talking to Trump on Jan. 6 MORE (R-Ohio), on Wednesday filed articles of impeachment against Rosenstein, the top Department of Justice (DOJ) official overseeing special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerSenate Democrats urge Garland not to fight court order to release Trump obstruction memo Why a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG Barr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel MORE's Russia investigation. That measure is not a privileged resolution so it cannot be brought straight to the House floor. 

The articles of impeachment charge that Rosenstein has a conflict of interest in Mueller's probe, and has failed to produce documents for ongoing investigations into the FBI and DOJ's conduct during the 2016 presidential election.

"And quite frankly, it’s either we hold them in contempt or we get the documents or we impeach them," Meadows added on Fox. "And the only thing we have control over is to bring impeachment straight to the floor." 

Republican lawmakers have targeted Rosenstein for months, but some have voiced concerns about the movement to impeach him. 

House Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanWisconsin GOP quietly prepares Ron Johnson backup plans RealClearPolitics reporter says Freedom Caucus shows how much GOP changed under Trump Juan Williams: Biden's child tax credit is a game-changer MORE (R-Wis.) has not signed on in support of the resolution, but Meadows said it does not "require the consent of the Speaker."

ADVERTISEMENT

"What we put in today was nonprivileged," Meadows said, explaining the details of the process. "It goes in, gets referred to the [House] Judiciary Committee, but starting tomorrow, we can bring it up as a privileged motion." 

"It really means that it would require a vote on the House floor within two days, and that’s something any member of Congress, Jim [Jordan] or I, can do," he continued.

Meadows is the chair of the House Freedom Caucus, a voting bloc made up of some of the most conservative members of the House. All eleven House members who signed onto the impeachment resolution are members of the caucus who have been some of Rosenstein's fiercest critics. 

Conservatives frustrated with Mueller's investigation into Russian involvement in the 2016 presidential election have long targeted Rosenstein, with some lawmakers claiming he has delayed their probe into FBI agents involved in Mueller's investigation who they feel are biased against Trump.  

Jordan said they want to impeach Rosenstein because they believe he has "stonewalled" efforts by Congress to obtain documents necessary for their investigations. 

"We’re tired of the Justice Department giving us the finger and not giving us the information," he told Ingraham. 

Democrats have called the attempt at impeachment "a direct attack on the special counsel’s investigation."

"It is a panicked and dangerous attempt to undermine an ongoing criminal investigation in an effort to protect President Trump as the walls are closing in around him and his associates," said the top Democrats on the House Judiciary, Oversight and Government Reform and Intelligence committees, Reps. Jerrold Nadler (N.Y.), Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsFormer Cummings staffer unveils congressional bid McCarthy, GOP face a delicate dance on Jan. 6 committee Five big questions about the Jan. 6 select committee MORE (D-Md.) and Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffA new kind of hero? Last week's emotional TV may be a sign Officers offer harrowing accounts at first Jan. 6 committee hearing Live coverage: House panel holds first hearing on Jan. 6 probe MORE (D-Calif.), respectively, in a joint statement.

Rosenstein in May pushed back at his GOP critics, saying that the Justice Department is "not going to be extorted" in response to the threat of impeachment.