Committee News

Congressional committees investigate and scrutinize bills and other issues, often on topics of significant public interest. They are one of the primary ways the Senate examines laws and government spending proposals before they reach the full Senate.

The panel’s final report and criminal referrals have given ammunition to Trump critics, but the inquiry’s work is far from over. The Justice Department will ultimately decide whether to prosecute, and if so, what charges to bring.

In the weeks leading up to Monday’s announcement, committee members back and forthed on whether to refer Trump for prosecution. They were cautious, but confident that the evidence they had gathered warranted the move.

After the Justice Department received the committee’s formal referral of Trump for obstruction of justice, the department will review it and determine whether to take further action. Depending on what’s found, the case could go to trial or be settled through a plea deal.

The committee has a wide range of jurisdiction and can investigate both domestic and foreign policies. It is also empowered to subpoena witnesses and receive classified information. The panel’s investigations have resulted in a number of criminal and civil indictments, as well as Congressional and Justice Department hearings that have highlighted a number of controversial issues.

During the first two years of Trump’s presidency, the committee has led efforts to reform the criminal justice system, improve the way Congress works and protect voters from false or misleading political advertising. Its members are known for their rigorous research and their ability to find bipartisan solutions to some of the nation’s most pressing problems.

Committee News

As Congress nears the end of its 2023 term, many members are preparing to retire. Four of the panel’s nine members won’t be returning to Congress in 2024, including Republican vice-chair Rep. Liz Cheney and Republican Reps. Adam Kinzinger and Stephanie Murphy.

For the first time in the panel’s history, a Democratic member is running to replace Cheney. The new member is Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who has become the face of the progressive movement in the House and will be a powerful voice on this panel.

The panel’s upcoming release of transcripts of interviews will provide fodder to the president’s critics. It will also grant a longstanding demand by some of the committee’s interviewees to see the full context of their testimony. Previously, the committee was selective about which snippets of their interviews it played during public hearings. The full transcripts will be posted on the committee’s website.