Senate Judiciary subpoenas Manafort

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

Committee Chairman Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyBiden names new watchdog at finance agency after embattled IG departs McConnell warns Democrats against 'artificial timeline' for infrastructure deal Biden's bipartisan deal faces Senate gauntlet MORE (R-Iowa) and ranking member Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinNearly 140 Democrats urge EPA to 'promptly' allow California to set its own vehicle pollution standards Biden signs bill to bolster crime victims fund Stripping opportunity from DC's children MORE (D-Calif.) announced Tuesday that they had subpoenaed Manafort, President TrumpDonald TrumpThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - White House, Dems play blame game over evictions The Memo: Left pins hopes on Nina Turner in Ohio after recent defeats Biden administration to keep Trump-era rule of turning away migrants during pandemic 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."

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"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 ClintonFive things to watch in two Ohio special election primaries Clintons, Stacey Abrams meeting Texas Democrats Biden says Russia spreading misinformation ahead of 2022 elections 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.