American people and Congress 'entitled to know' underlying evidence in Mueller investigation: House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler

PHOTO: In this file photo taken on June 21, 2017, former FBI Director Robert Mueller, special counsel on the Russian investigation, leaves following a meeting with members of the US Senate Judiciary Committee at the US Capitol in Washington.PlaySaul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images, FILE
WATCH 'Impeachment is a long way down the road': House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler

The top Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee said that the American people and Congress “are entitled to know” the underlying evidence in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.

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“The Justice Department has made clear in the last few weeks that it may hide from the American people the conclusions of the Mueller investigation," Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., said on “This Week” Sunday. "We will fight to make that public.

Mueller has been looking into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, including whether anyone associated with the Trump campaign may have coordinated efforts with Russian operatives.

PHOTO: In this file photo taken on June 21, 2017, former FBI Director Robert Mueller, special counsel on the Russian investigation, leaves following a meeting with members of the US Senate Judiciary Committee at the US Capitol in Washington. Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images, FILE
In this file photo taken on June 21, 2017, former FBI Director Robert Mueller, special counsel on the Russian investigation, leaves following a meeting with members of the US Senate Judiciary Committee at the US Capitol in Washington.

In an interview a week prior on “This Week”, Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said his committee would subpoena Mueller’s final report and even call him to testify before the committee if the report was not made public. Schiff also said that he was “absolutely” prepared to sue the Trump administration, if necessary.

On “This Week” Sunday, Nadler said that the Department of Justice has said that “the normal policy that you don’t comment on the conduct of people who are not indicted will prevail.

“And that should normally prevail, but not when you say the president cannot be indicted because he’s the president, that turns it into a cover up.”

PHOTO: Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee Adam Schiff (D-CA) arrives for a closed hearing with Michael Cohen, the former personal attorney of U.S. President Donald Trump, on Capitol Hill, Feb. 28, 2019. Joshua Roberts/Reuters
Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee Adam Schiff (D-CA) arrives for a closed hearing with Michael Cohen, the former personal attorney of U.S. President Donald Trump, on Capitol Hill, Feb. 28, 2019.

In the February interview on “This Week,” Schiff argued that the department has “violated that policy” over the last two years, and said it established a new precedent when it “turned over thousands and thousands of pages of discovery in the Clinton email investigation, and there was no indictment in that investigation.”

The House Intelligence Committee chairman added that in addition to that precedent, the “intense public need to know,” with regard to Mueller’s findings, “overrides any other consideration.”

“We do want the underlying evidence, I mean people are entitled to know it,” Nadler said Sunday, echoing Schiff’s stance. “And Congress is entitled to know it because it’s our job to hold the president accountable.”

Nadler said that if the Justice Department doesn’t release the “evidence of [Trump’s] crimes, if any, to the public,” the department is saying that “the president cannot be held accountable.”

“So you’ll sue in that case?” Stephanopoulos asked.

“We will subpoena, we will -- we will do whatever we have to do,” Nadler said.

PHOTO: U.S. Representative Jerry Nadler, Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, speaks during a hearing with acting Attorney General Matt Whitaker on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., Feb. 8, 2019. Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images
U.S. Representative Jerry Nadler, Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, speaks during a hearing with acting Attorney General Matt Whitaker on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., Feb. 8, 2019.

Stephanopoulos also asked what Nadler would do if Mueller finished his investigation and said he found no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

“Is that a conclusion you’ll accept?” he asked.

“Well, we’d want to see the evidence behind that and see the validity of that, and we can agree to disagree,” the House Judiciary Committee chairman said. “But this investigation goes far beyond collusion.”

Pointing to other investigations the Democratic House may undertake, Nadler said, “We’ve seen attacks on the freedom of the press ... we’ve seen attacks on the Department of Justice, attacks on the FBI, attacks on -- on judges. All of these are very corrosive to liberty and to the proper functioning of government.

“All this has to be looked at and the facts laid out to the American people.”