Senate Judiciary subpoenas Manafort

The Senate Judiciary Committee has subpoenaed Paul Manafort to appear publicly before the committee on Wednesday.

Committee Chairman Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleySenate approves border bill that prevents shutdown Grassley raises voice after McConnell interrupts Senate speech Senate confirms Trump pick William Barr as new attorney general MORE (R-Iowa) and ranking member Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinFeinstein says she thinks Biden will run after meeting with him Trump judicial nominee Neomi Rao seeks to clarify past remarks on date rape Bottom Line MORE (D-Calif.) announced Tuesday that they had subpoenaed Manafort, President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump nominates ambassador to Turkey Trump heads to Mar-a-Lago after signing bill to avert shutdown CNN, MSNBC to air ad turned down by Fox over Nazi imagery MORE's former campaign chief, on Monday night.

Grassley and Feinstein initially said late last week that they would not immediately subpoena Manafort or Donald Trump Jr. to deliver scheduled public testimony before the committee on Wednesday, having reached a deal with them through their attorneys. However, the committee leaders said Tuesday that they had not reached an agreement with Manafort for a "voluntary transcribed interview."


"Mr. Manafort, through his attorney, said that he would be willing to provide only a single transcribed interview to Congress, which would not be available to the Judiciary Committee members or staff," the senators said. "While the Judiciary Committee was willing to cooperate on equal terms with any other committee to accommodate Mr. Manafort’s request, ultimately that was not possible."

However, this left open the door for Manafort to avoid testifying by agreeing to provide the interview requested.

"As with other witnesses, we may be willing to excuse him from Wednesday’s hearing if he would be willing to agree to production of documents and a transcribed interview, with the understanding that the interview would not constitute a waiver of his rights or prejudice the committee’s right to compel his testimony in the future," Grassley and Feinstein said.

The development means that, barring any change of heart by Manafort, the former campaign chairman will testify in a public setting before the committee on Wednesday.

The hearing is purportedly focused on oversight of the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) and efforts to influence U.S. elections. 

Trump Jr. and Manafort have been the subjects of close scrutiny in recent weeks following revelations about a meeting between Trump's eldest son and a Russian lawyer who was presented to Trump Jr. as someone with damaging information on then-Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonOvernight Defense: Trump declares border emergency | .6B in military construction funds to be used for wall | Trump believes Obama would have started war with North Korea | Pentagon delivers aid for Venezuelan migrants Sarah Sanders says she was interviewed by Mueller's office Trump: I believe Obama would have gone to war with North Korea MORE. Manafort, as well as Trump's son-in-law and now senior adviser Jared Kushner, also attended the meeting.

Kushner met with the Senate Intelligence Committee on Monday behind closed doors and will meet with the House Intelligence Committee Tuesday as part of their parallel investigations into Russian meddling in last year's presidential election. He emphasized at a rare press conference Monday that he did not collude with Moscow or have improper contacts with Russians.

Meanwhile, Manafort interviewed with the staff of the Senate Intelligence Committee Tuesday morning, his spokesman said in a statement.

- Updated at 11 a.m.