Should Donald Trump survive special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation, Democrats could make the president's life a living hell should they take control of the House in 2018 midterms, claims a New York Times columnist.
In anticipation of the so-called "blue wave" that is expected to see a substantial number of Republican-held seats flip to Democrats, columnist Michelle Goldberg notes that with control comes chairmanships on Democratic-majority committees which have subpoena power.
"Republicans are circulating a spreadsheet of investigations that House Democrats could undertake should they take control of the chamber," she writes. "It was compiled by cataloging Democratic requests for documents and interviews that Republicans previously ignored, and it doesn’t necessarily tell Republicans much about Democratic priorities."
Noting the GOP has turned a blind eye to transgressions by Trump and a startling number of cabinet members, both still heading their departments or having resigned in less than two years, Goldberg makes note of some major committee work that will likely be taken up with Democrats seizing the reins of power.
"Elijah Cummings, the ranking Democrat on the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, wants to make sure Democrats emphasize bread-and-butter issues like the rise in prescription drug prices. 'One thing I’m not looking for is retribution,' he told me. 'I’m just trying to get to regular order, I swear to God,'" she wrote.
"Adam Schiff, who is poised to lead the House Intelligence Committee if Democrats win a majority, plans to renew the committee’s investigation into Russia’s role in the 2016 election. “One that I would put as very important is the issue of whether the Russians were laundering money through the Trump Organization,” she continued.
According to Goldberg, Democrats will also go after Trump's tax returns, looking for Russian involvement with leaders of three congressional committees -- the House Ways and Means Committee, the Senate Finance Committee and the Joint Committee on Taxation -- each looking into Trump's finances.
Recalling that Trump supporters who happen to be members of Trump's pricey Mar-a-Lago resort are providing input on veterans' affairs, Goldberg said the newly installed chair of the Veterans Affairs subcommittee will likely open an investigation.
Goldberg writes, "Cummings, meanwhile, said he plans a two-lane process, combining attention to national issues that transcend Trump with scrutiny of the administration. 'We are in a fight for the soul of our democracy,” he said. “So I understand that for me to effectively do that second lane that I just talked about — voting rights and all those good things, prescription drugs — I need to have the democracy intact.'"
She adds, "Over the last 19 months, we’ve heard the phrase 'This is not normal' a lot. If Democrats lose in November, it will remain an impotent mantra of the resistance. If they win, it becomes an accusation backed by subpoena power. "
You can read her whole commentary here.