Proposed GOP select panel would be empowered to review ‘ongoing criminal investigations’

Proposed GOP select panel would be empowered to review ‘ongoing criminal investigations’



The panel’s expected formation comes as the Justice Department continues to arrest and prosecute hundreds of rioters charged with breaching the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, and amid two ongoing criminal investigations connected to former President Donald Trump. Those include the probe of his effort to overturn the 2020 election and his decision to warehouse highly sensitive national security documents at his Mar-a-Lago estate after leaving office.

Both Trump-related probes are now overseen by special counsel Jack Smith, who was appointed by Attorney General Merrick Garland in November to manage the sensitive grand jury investigations.

The subcommittee proposal would permit McCarthy to name 13 members to the panel, including five after consultation with Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries — a structure similar to the Jan. 6 select committee. Pelosi opted to reject two of McCarthy’s picks to that panel, prompting him to withdraw from any participation.

Unlike the Jan. 6 committee, however, the GOP-led probe would be housed under Jordan’s committee. Subpoenas issued by the panel would be authorized by Jordan.

The panel would also be empowered to investigate how executive branch agencies “obtain information from, and provide information to the private sector, non-profit entities, or other government agencies to facilitate action against American citizens,” a likely harbinger of a review of FBI interactions with social media companies in advance of the 2020 election and more broadly.

The proposal also includes blanket clauses permitting the panel to pursue “any other issues related to the violation of the civil liberties of citizens of the United States” and “any other matter relating to information collected pursuant to the investigation conducted under this paragraph at any time during the One Hundred Eighteenth Congress.”



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