Rep. Brindisi today (October 31) voted in favor of a House Rules resolution creating a transparent public investigation to be opened alongside an already-ongoing impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump related to dealings with Ukraine.
Brindisi was previously one of six Democrats who had still not publicly supported the inquiry prior to the vote, but this morning announced he would do so in order to allow both parties to play a part in the process.
It’s important to not that what passed this morning was not a vote on impeachment, but rather a constitutionally required House approval to create a more transparent process around the formal inquiry made into impeachment.
The law now authorizes public transcripts to be made of the recent depositions, with appropriate redactions made for classified or other sensitive information.
It also establishes procedures for all investigating committees to transmit their evidence to the Committee on the Judiciary for use in their proceedings.
Additionally, both Republicans and Democrats now have the right to question witnesses, propose witnesses, issue subpoenas, and seek votes on their requests, following a precedent set during the Clinton and Nixon impeachment inquiries.
On the other “side of the fence,” today’s resolution also formally allows the president opportunities to participate at the Judiciary Committee.
Specifically, the White House is allowed to present a case, respond to evidence, submit written requests for additional testimony or other evidence, attend hearings, raise objections, and cross-examine witnesses
The final tally appeared to be made almost entirely along party lines, with the exception of a pair of Democrats voting against the measure and one Independent voting to support it.
Ultimately, the resolution passed by a 232-196 tally, with four representatives abstaining.
WXHC News reached out to Rep. Brindisi for comment and received the following statement in response:
“The bottom-line here is that the already-in-process investigation is moving along and delivering more questions than answers on both sides of the aisle. Since the investigation began, Democrats and Republicans in charge have failed to effectively come together in a constructive way that delivers what the public deserves: straight facts.
My constituents want to judge things for themselves, and I support them. They want more information and public testimony. The only way to ensure this actually happens is to take the investigation into the public arena and shine a much-needed bright light. Doing so will allow both parties to finally call witnesses, the White House to rightfully be involved, and others to publicly respond to testimony heard in the wide open.
Fair and open hearings will finally let Americans judge for themselves and –right now—I could not agree more. I want to judge for myself. We all do.” -Rep. Anthony Brindisi (D-22)