For months, Republican Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley has shown gradually increasing interest in exposing Donald Trump’s scandals, or at least increasing resentment at how Trump’s White House has been refusing to cooperate with his committee’s investigations. But over the weekend, seemingly in response to James Comey’s testimony, Grassley has had enough of Trump’s crap and he’s coming out swinging in three different ways.
Senator Grassley threatened yesterday to subpoena all documents related to the infamous Trump-Russia dossier if they’re not immediately turned over (link). This came immediately after we all learned that Donald Trump is overly fearful of the more salacious accusations made about him in that dossier. But this was just the warm-up act.
Grassley then told a reporter that he’s open to pursuing Donald Trump for obstruction of justice if his committee’s Democratic counterpart Dianne Feinstein is. This led to Feinstein immediately penning a formal letter to Grassley, stating that she wants to pursue to matter (link). In other words, he put it in motion, and he just wanted the bipartisan cover of getting her to put the request in writing.
But then Chuck Grassley topped himself yesterday by penning a letter to Donald Trump, slamming him for his Justice Department’s decision to ignore any information requests from Democrats in Congress (link). Grassley’s words to Trump are damning: “Oversight brings transparency, and transparency brings accountability. And, the opposite is true. Shutting down oversight requests doesn’t drain the swamp, Mr. President. It floods the swamp.”
So what’s really going on here? Grassley has previously shown a willingness to throw his weight around when Trump’s White House has refused to respect the rights of Congress, such as when he threatened to hold up all of Trump’s remaining appointments until certain information requests were granted. But this seems different. He’s specifically defending the Democrats against Trump. He’s letting the ranking Democrat on his own committee decide how the committee should go after Trump. It appears Chuck Grassley has simply had enough of Donald Trump’s crap.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report