After reports surfaced last week claiming that two grand jury investigations into possible collusion between the Donald Trump presidential campaign and Russian officials and intelligence agents to influence the outcome of the 2016 presidential election, Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey confirmed in sworn testimony Wednesday that “two sets of prosecutors” were hard at work on the Trump Russia scandal.
According to John Dean, former White House lawyer in the Richard Nixon administration and a key figure in the Watergate scandal, Comey’s sworn testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee strongly indicates that at least one grand jury has already convened to hear evidence in the investigation of Trump and his alleged Russia ties.
If indeed a grand jury, or as last week’s reports claimed, two grand juries are indeed hearing evidence of Trump’s Russia connections, the likelihood exists that some Trump associates and potentially even Trump himself could face indictments — and those indictments could spark impeachment proceedings if they are deemed to reveal “treason, bribery, and other high crimes and misdemeanors,” which are the impeachable offenses laid out in Article 3 of the United States Constitution.
Political commentator Keith Olbermann discussed the report of grand jury investigation in the May 5 edition of his GQ video podcast, The Resistance. Watch Olbermann’s commentary, including his report of Dean’s reaction to Comey’s testimony, in the video below.
Testifying on Wednesday, Comey was asked by Hawaii Democratic Senator Mazie Hirono whether the FBI investigation into the Russia ties was “coordinating with any U.S. attorney’s office.”
“Yes, well — two sets of prosecutors, the Main Justice the National Security Division and the Eastern District of Virginia U.S. Attorney’s Office,” Comey replied.
Comey did not go as far as to explicitly state that grand juries had been convened, only that the federal prosecutors were taking part in the Trump Russia investigation, but grand juries are a common tool used by prosecutors to investigate potential crimes.
Watch Comey’s complete Senate testimony in the video below, courtesy of the New York Times. His comments regarding the “two sets of prosecutors” occur at about the 3:37 mark
The Senate Judiciary Committee is conducting its own investigation into the Trump Russia ties, as is the House Intelligence Committee. Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Richard Burr, a North Carolina Republican, is now “prepared to compel” several Trump associates to hand over any records they possess of their contacts with Russian agents or officials, according to a Friday report in the New York Times.
Those associates include Trump’s fired former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, who is already believed to have broken the law by accepting thousands of dollars from the Russian government in the form of paid speaking fees.
Longtime Trump friend and confidant Roger Stone, former Trump Campaign Manager Paul Manafort, and former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page are likely to also be forced to turn over their records showing their contacts with Russia, according to the New York Times report.
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