Politics

House Judiciary chair Jerry Nadler says Trump obstructed justice, will request documents from 60-plus people in president's circle

Key Points
  • Rep. Jerry Nadler said he believes President Donald Trump has obstructed justice,
  • Nadler, D-NY, said his Judiciary Committee will request documents from more than 60 people in the White House, the Justice Department, and the Trump Organization — including top executives Donald Trump Jr. and Allen Weisselberg.
  • Nadler, speaking days after Trump's former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen testified to Congress about multiple possible crimes by the president, pointedly stopped short of saying he would seek Trump's impeachment.
President Donald Trump hugs the US flag as he arrives to speak at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland, on March 2, 2019.
Nicholas Kamm | AFP | Getty Images

House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler said Sunday he believes that President Donald Trump has obstructed justice and announced plans to request documents from more than five dozen people in the president's circle, including his son and a top company executive.

Nadler, D-NY, told ABC News' "This Week" that the committee will "begin the investigations to present the case ... about obstruction of justice, corruption and abuse of power."

The committee, which would be responsible for any impeachment proceedings against Trump, will ask for documents from people in the White House, the Justice Department, and the Trump Organization — including top executives Donald Trump Jr. and Allen Weisselberg — to begin presenting that case "to the American people," Nadler said.

But Nadler, speaking days after Trump's former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen testified to Congress about multiple possible crimes by the president, pointedly stopped short of saying he would seek Trump's impeachment.

"We're far from making decisions" about impeachment, Nadler said.

"This Week" host George Stephanopolous asked: "Do you think the president obstructed justice?"

"Yes, I do," Nadler answered.

Later on "This Week," the Republican leader in the House said Trump had done nothing to warrant being impeached and accused Nadler of being set on unseating the president despite that fact.

"I think Congressman [Jerrold] Nadler decided to impeach the president the day the president won the election," said House Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.

"Listen to exactly what he said. He talks about impeachment before he even became chairman, and then he says you got to persuade people to get there. There's nothing that the president did wrong," McCarthy said.

Stephanopoulos then asked, "Nothing?"

McCarthy answered: "In this process, to be impeached? Show me where the president did anything to be impeached."

Last week, Cohen, 52, testified publicly for more than seven hours at the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

He detailed how Trump had personally reimbursed him for hush-money payments Cohen has made to porn star Stormy Daniels and directed him to lie about why those payments were made. Cohen also spoke of how the Trump Organization had inflated assets in some cases and deflated them in others to mislead entities, which would have constituted tax and insurance fraud.

Cohen is due to begin serving a three-year federal prison sentence on May 6 for multiple crimes, including some related to his work for Trump. He is cooperating with special counsel Robert Mueller's probe of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and possible collusion by members of the Trump campaign in that interference.

The president has denied any wrongdoing.