President Trump’s legal team had been hoping to block Congressional efforts to investigate the president and to view his financial documents. President Trump and his legal team have been arguing that, as president, Trump is all but immune to Congressional investigations. However, a federal judge said it was “simply not fathomable” that Congress could not investigate the president.
Judge Amit Mehta argued that since Congress is constitutionally authorized to remove the president through impeachment proceedings, the lawmaking body must also have the right to investigate the president. Trump’s legal team is already appealing the decision, so the matter is far from settled.
Ultimately, the ongoing battle between the White House and Democrats in the House of Representatives will go a long way in determining the separation of powers and checks and balances as enshrined in the constitution. Democrat Elijah Cummings, the House Oversight chairman, hailed the ruling as a “resounding victory for the rule of law and our constitutional system of checks and balances.”
Some Republicans are likewise growing wary of the president and his claim of immunity. Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO), a member of the House Judiciary Committee, has stated “I’m in Congress. I’m aligned with Congress. I’m not aligned with the executive branch. And I think we have oversight authority over the administration. And if the president has acted illegally, then I think we have oversight authority.”
Other Republicans acknowledge that Congress has authority to investigate the president but claim that Democrats are acting illegitimately. Rep. Mike Simpson (R-ID) claimed Democrats “are taking too broad of a view of the investigative powers of Congress and the administration’s taking way too narrow of one.”
Meanwhile, Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) claimed over the weekend and again on Monday that President Donald Trump should be impeached. Amash argues that the Mueller report contains enough evidence to proceed with impeachment. Amash’s comments caught many Republicans off guard.