Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), the ranking member and likely soon-to-be chair of the House's Judiciary Committee, said on Sunday on CNN that based on Friday's filings in the Southern District of New York, President Donald Trump committed impeachable offenses during his campaign.
Prosecutors have tied Donald Trump to a federal crime for the first time, accusing him of directing illegal hush-money payments to women during his presidential campaign in 2016. In addition to new filings by Mueller in the Cohen and former campaign chairman Paul Manafort cases on Friday, the Southern District of NY recommended that Cohen be sentenced to a "substantial prison term" for his campaign finance violations.
Nadler said that the number and importance of impeachable offenses committed come into play in determining whether to start impeachment proceedings.
The Russian ambassador, a deputy prime minister, a pop star, a weightlifter, a lawyer and a Soviet military veteran were among those who reportedly interacted with Trump's associates, The Washington Post newspaper reported, citing public records and interviews. He has denied wrongdoing.
But Rep. Jerry Nadler of NY, who's expected to chair the panel in January, says it's unclear whether that alone would justify Congress launching impeachment proceedings.
But he said something that would be perfectly legal to do as a businessman could take on a different standard as a candidate, and that campaign finance laws are "very open-ended". That would be up to the attorney general.
Nadler indicated that Democrats, who will control the House in January, will step up their own investigations. He said Congress, the Justice Department and the special counsel need to dig deeper into the allegations, which include questions about whether Trump lied about his business arrangements with Russians and about possible obstruction of justice.
Although Cohen has admitted to lying to Congress, Schiff said he is confident in Mueller's assessment of Cohen. "It will try to ... stop this massive fraud on the American people".
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Legal experts are divided over whether a sitting president can be charged with a crime, as well as on whether a violation of campaign finance law would be an impeachable offence.
Mr Cohen has been found guilty of campaign finance violations for paying hush money to two women before the 2016 Presidential Election.
In separate filings, Mueller's team detail how Cohen spoke to a Russian who "claimed to be a "trusted person" in the Russian Federation who could offer the campaign "political synergy" and 'synergy on a government level.'" Cohen said he never followed up on that meeting.
Cohen also said he, "continued to work on the project and discuss it with Individual 1 well into the campaign".
"It's clear that Trump is the target and that he'll be indicted eventually", McCarthy said.
Such a move would be "a bad mistake", Rubio said.
Mr Trump has already shown he's not afraid to use his pardon power, particularly for those he has viewed as unfair victims of partisanship.