House Democrats notified the Supreme Court on Monday they are engaged in an "ongoing presidential impeachment investigation" which requires redacted, grand-jury documents from special counsel Robert Mueller, according to court documents.
Democrats have hinted they might bring up new impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump following his February acquittal on two articles of impeachment. In the brief submitted to the Supreme Court, the Democrats guaranteed there would be no leaks of the documents.
"The [House Judiciary] Committee's investigation did not cease with the conclusion of the impeachment trial," the Democrats told the Supreme Court on Monday. "If this material reveals new evidence supporting the conclusion that President Trump committed impeachable offenses that are not covered by the articles adopted by the House, the committee will proceed accordingly — including, if necessary, by considering whether to recommend new articles of impeachment."
Democrats are looking to investigate "the possible exercise of improper political influence over recent decisions made in the Roger Stone and Michael Flynn prosecutions, both of which were initiated by the special counsel."
Mueller recommended to Judge Amy Berman Jackson that Stone receive nine years in prison for obstructing Congress and other charges. The Department of Justice, however, called those charges too harsh, which led Berman to sentence Stone to three years.
In early May, the DOJ got the Supreme Court to temporarily block an order from the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals to turn over grand-jury documents. The DOJ contended the documents were secret based on Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 6(e) and Trump's earlier impeachment acquittal discounted any exception to the federal rule.
Democrats, however, said the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals explicitly agreed the preliminary impeachment hearings in the House are equivalent to a pending judicial proceeding.
"[B]ecause that exception encompasses impeachment proceedings and the committee has established a 'particularized need' for the grand jury materials, the order of the district court is affirmed," Judge Judith Rogers wrote in the D.C. appellate court's decision in favor of the House Democrats.
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