Trump critic Nadler moves up on House Judiciary Committee

December 26, 2017 By Paula Katinas Brooklyn Daily Eagle
U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler’s new role as ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee will put him in the national spotlight. Photo courtesy of Nadler’s office
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One of President Trump’s fiercest critics in Congress now occupies the top spot of his party on the influential House Judiciary Committee and as 2017 turns into 2018, all eyes will be on him.

U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-Upper West Side-Bensonhurst) became the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee in the wake of the resignation of U.S. Rep. John Conyers (D-Detroit) over sexual abuse allegations.

U.S. Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Virginia) is the chairman of the committee.

Nadler, a veteran lawmaker who has served in Congress for 25 years, has been a frequent critic of the president.

Nadler will be increasingly in the spotlight as investigations into Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election and possible collusion by the Trump campaign move forward.

Nadler was elected by his Democratic colleagues in the House by a vote of 118-72 to be elevated to the top-ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee.

If Democrats take over the House in the 2018 midterm elections, then Nadler would be poised to become chairman of the powerful committee.

Following the announcement last week that he was selected to serve as ranking member of the committee, Nadler made it clear that he intends to hold Trump’s feet to the fire, not just on Russia, but on other issues.

“This is a critical time in our nation’s history, and the work of the Democrats on the Judiciary Committee is more important than ever,” Nadler said in a statement. “Our efforts to hold the administration and those wishing to turn back history’s long arc towards justice accountable are central to the defense of progress and democracy. We must fight to protect the rule of law, strengthen our safety and security from enemies foreign and domestic, shield Americans’ rights and liberties from encroachment, and guarantee that all people, no matter their age, race, gender, religion, ability, finances, nationality, or sexual orientation, are treated fairly and equally.”

Nadler, who has a long history of fighting for the civil rights of the LGBTQ community, said he will continue that role as the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee.

“Together, we will fiercely defend and support civil rights and civil liberties for all Americans.  It is our obligation to be steadfast in working for criminal justice reform, to be vigilant in protecting women’s rights, including the right to an abortion, promote greater equality for members of the LGBTQ community, to demand action on common sense gun laws, to support consumers and oversee antitrust concerns, and to hold the Trump administration accountable for its destructive policies and unprecedented misconduct,” he stated.

“This committee has a responsibility to uphold our laws and ensure justice,” Nadler added.

Nadler is keeping an eye on the latest developments involving the Trump-Russia controversy.

In the wake of a July 19 New York Times interview, in which the president sharply criticized Attorney General Jeff Sessions and issued a veiled warning to Special Counsel Robert Mueller to stay away from investigating his family’s finances. Nadler called on the Judiciary Committee to hold hearings on Trump.

Nadler and all of the other Democrats on the committee wrote a letter to Goodlatte (R-Virginia) to demand that he hold an oversight hearing.

Three congressional committees: The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Committee on the Judiciary; are all investigating suspected Russian meddling in the 2016 race.

But the House Committee on the Judiciary has not held an oversight hearing related to the Russia investigation, Nadler said.

“We write again to request that you schedule hearings with the senior leadership of the Department of Justice, including Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, and acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, without delay. President Trump’s contempt for the leadership of the Department of Justice is now clear,” the letter to Goodlatte read.

Nadler represents the 10th Congressional District, a seat that takes in all or parts of several neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Manhattan. The Brooklyn neighborhoods in his district include: Bensonhurst, Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Midwood, Sunset Park and Red Hook.


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