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The leader of the House Intelligence Committee is threatening to move quickly on a vote to hold Attorney General Jeff Sessions in contempt of Congress if the Department of Justice doesn’t turn over material related to the Russia investigation.
Chairman Devin Nunes said it doesn’t matter that Sessions recused himself from decisions regarding Russia’s involvement in the 2016 election; he’s the head of the Justice Department, so he would be the initial target of a contempt resolution.
Nunes is putting House GOP leaders in a tough spot. Triggering a confrontation over Sessions could please President Donald Trump, who has strongly criticized his own Justice Department, but other Republicans worry that such a move could muddy the party’s campaign message for the congressional elections later this year.
Nunes, a California Republican, first floated a possible contempt resolution over the weekend and on Monday doubled down on his sense of urgency.
“We know they have a long history of stonewalling us, and we’re well aware of it, that’s why we need to move more quickly than usual,” Nunes said in a brief interview. “We’re not going to give them the opportunity to squirm around and put lies out and mislead and obfuscate like they’ve done in the past. Those days are over.”
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