Rep. Jerrold Nadler threatened Attorney General William Barr on Sunday.
Nadler said he would issue a subpoena to compel Barr to appear before his House panel after Barr reportedly challenged how he would be questioned.
“Then we will have to subpoena him and we will have to use whatever means we can to enforce the subpoena. We’ll use all legal mechanisms to get them to comply with the subpoenas and they will comply,” the New York Democrat told reporters.
“Ultimately, the law says they have to comply. What the administration is doing is seeking to draw it out.”
Nadler is the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and he wants to allow all panel members to question Barr for five minutes each at Thursday’s hearing.
He also wants a second round of questioning from both side that would last for 30 minutes and would allow the counsels for Democrats and Republicans on the committee to also ask questions.
“It’s in my judgment an effective way of doing things, and the witness is not going to tell the committee how to conduct its hearing,” Nadler said on Sunday.
Nadler went on to propose that the committee go into a closed session to discuss the redacted sections of the report.
The Department of Justice reported to Nadler’s office that the attorney general is opposed to having committee counsels question him and he is also opposed to holding a closed session to discuss the report, CNN reported.
If that is the format that Nadler holds to, Barr has threatened not to show up.
This is just the latest round of sparing between the White House and Democratic members of Congress.
They have debated over subpoenas and deadlines to have present and former administration officials testify and to turn over information like the president’s tax returns.
Trump has declared that Mueller’s report cleared him of collusion and obstruction of justice accusations and has said any further probes into him or his administration only serve a partisan function.
But Democrats have criticized Barr over his handling of the Mueller report.
At a press conference given just before releasing the redacted report earlier this month, Barr said it exonerated Trump of collusion and obstruction.
Mueller said his team found no evidence of collusion with the Russians by Trump or his campaign associates, but did not come to a conclusion on obstruction.
Credit: NY Post