House conservatives ask Trump to intervene in fight with DOJ over documents

House conservatives ask Trump to intervene in fight with DOJ over documents
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Leading conservatives are asking President TrumpDonald John TrumpLawmakers prep ahead of impeachment hearing Democrats gear up for high-stakes Judiciary hearing Warren says she made almost M from legal work over past three decades MORE to intervene in a fight between Department of Justice (DOJ) officials and House Republicans over a stalled request for documents.

In a letter obtained by The Hill, several members of the hard-line House Freedom Caucus called on Trump to use his power to release the remaining documents they’ve been trying to obtain from the department.

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They said Trump should instruct Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsThe shifting impeachment positions of Jonathan Turley Rosenstein, Sessions discussed firing Comey in late 2016 or early 2017: FBI notes Justice Dept releases another round of summaries from Mueller probe MORE to “immediately produce all documents requested by Congress relating to our investigation of certain prosecutorial and investigative decisions made by the Department of Justice and FBI in 2016 and 2017.”

“As a separate and equal branch of government, we have a constitutional right to these documents,” the lawmakers wrote. “The Department of Justice has obstructed Congressional oversight by refusing to supply necessary and relevant documents.”

The letter, which comes nearly one year after the DOJ appointed special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerTrump says he'll release financial records before election, knocks Dems' efforts House impeachment hearings: The witch hunt continues Speier says impeachment inquiry shows 'very strong case of bribery' by Trump MORE, is signed by Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark MeadowsMark Randall MeadowsLawmakers prep ahead of impeachment hearing Democrats express confidence in case as impeachment speeds forward Sunday shows — Nadler: A jury would convict Trump in 'three minutes flat' MORE (R-N.C.) and Reps. Jim JordanJames (Jim) Daniel JordanTrump, first lady take part in National Christmas Tree lighting The Hill's Morning Report - Dem impeachment report highlights phone records Lawmakers to watch during Wednesday's impeachment hearing MORE (R-Ohio) and Ron DeSantisRonald Dion DeSantis FBI identifies Pensacola shooter as Saudi Royal Saudi Air Force second lieutenant Overnight Defense: Suspect in Pensacola shooting identified as Saudi aviation student | Trump speaks with Saudi king after shooting | Esper denies considering 14K deployment to Mideast Suspect in deadly Pensacola air station shooting a Saudi national MORE (R-Fla.) — some of Trump’s top allies in the House.

“We’ve been consistent from the beginning that the American people have a right to know the truth about what happened at the highest levels of the Justice Department,” Meadows said in a statement. “This letter is another step in that effort for transparency.”

House Republicans have been seeking a tranche of documents that touch on a wide range of issues, including the investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonWill the Horowitz report split the baby? Gabbard commemorates John Lennon's passing by singing 'Imagine' Bannon: Clinton waiting to enter 2020 race and 'save the Democratic Party from Michael Bloomberg' MORE’s use of a private email server, the FBI’s decisionmaking during its initial investigation into the Trump campaign and the memo outlining the scope of the special counsel’s Russia investigation.

But conservatives have complained that the DOJ has slow-walked their request. Of the 1.2 million documents they have requested, they say the department has only handed over a few thousand documents in hard copy form, some of which they claim have been heavily redacted.

The DOJ has made space available at the department to allow committee staff to come view hundreds of thousands of unredacted documents while they work through the request - a process that House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob GoodlatteRobert (Bob) William GoodlatteUSCIS chief Cuccinelli blames Paul Ryan for immigration inaction Immigrant advocacy groups shouldn't be opposing Trump's raids Top Republican releases full transcript of Bruce Ohr interview MORE (R-Va.) has said he was pleased with.

Meadows and Jordan have previously threatened to impeach Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod RosensteinRosenstein, Sessions discussed firing Comey in late 2016 or early 2017: FBI notes Justice Dept releases another round of summaries from Mueller probe Judge rules former WH counsel McGahn must testify under subpoena MORE or hold him in contempt of Congress if he doesn’t work more quickly to turn over documents.

But now, the conservative ringleaders are asking their most powerful ally to step in — and in Trump, who has long blasted the Justice Department’s Russia investigation, they could have a sympathetic ear.

“We believe the best course of action would be for you to exercise the powers vested in the executive to make the documents we require available to Congress,” they wrote.