DOJ lawyer argues that ignoring subpoenas is in itself an impeachable offense
President Donald Trump during “chopper talk” on the South Lawn of the White House as he departed for Florida (screengrab)

In federal court this Thursday, a Justice Department lawyer said that ignoring subpoenas is an impeachable offense -- an opinion that directly contradicts arguments put forth by President Trump's lawyers at his Senate trial this week, CNN reports.


As CNN points out, the topic came up during a court hearing over the unsuccessful attempt by the Trump administration to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census. The House Oversight Committee sued the Justice Department and Commerce Department in November in a effort to have its subpoenas for documents enforced.

According to CNN, Justice Department lawyer James Burnham was asked by a federal judge what the House can do to enforce its subpoenas, to which Burnham replied that the House can use its impeachment powers, among other options.

Trump is charged with abusing his power and obstructing Congress by ordering his aides to defy subpoenas. According to Trump's lawyers, the obstruction charge is without merit because Trump was lawfully protecting the executive branch from Congress's requests for documents and testimony.

Read the full report over at CNN.