Congrtessional Democrats on Monday struck a rare deal in their wide-ranging probes of President Donald Trump, with the US Justice Department agreeing to hand over more evidence from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia inquiry.
The compromise, an unusual retreat by Trump in his months-long stonewalling campaign against House Democrats, came just before a House panel heard testimony for more than four hours from John Dean, a historic figure from the Watergate era.
Before Dean spoke to the House Judiciary Committee, Trump took the opportunity on Twitter to slam the former White House counsel under President Richard Nixon as a “sleazebag attorney.” Nixon resigned the presidency in disgrace in 1974.
Dean told the panel there were parallels between Mueller’s investigative report, released in redacted form in mid-April, and a 1974 document, known as the Watergate Road Map, in which a special prosecutor laid out the case against Nixon.
“Mueller has provided this committee with a road map,” said Dean, who was part of a panel of witnesses.
Mueller’s report found Russia meddled in the 2016 US presidential election and that Trump’s election campaign had multiple contacts with Russian officials. But the report found insufficient evidence to establish a criminal conspiracy between the campaign and Moscow.
As part of his effort to uncover more of Mueller’s findings, Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler announced that his panel will get some of the evidence related to Trump’s attempts to interfere with Mueller’s probe from the Justice Department.
The committee will not see a full, unredacted copy of Mueller’s report under the agreement, said Nadler, a Democrat. But lawmakers will get access to interview notes and other evidence, including “first-hand accounts of misconduct,” Nadler said at the outset of the hearing.