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Castro Calls For Congressional Examination of Presidential Pardoning Powers

July 2016
Ryan Poppe
TPR News
Congressman Joaquin Castro

A Texas Democrat is calling on his congressional colleagues to investigate President Trump over possible violations of federal election law.

San Antonio Congressman Joaquin Castro said he has asked members of the Senate Judiciary Committee to step into the drama between Trump and his former attorney, Michael Cohen, after House Speaker Paul Ryan said he would not call the U.S. House of Representatives back to take up the matter. The House reconvenes Sept. 4.


“I hope the judiciary committees will open investigations into the allegations that Michael Cohen made about the president directing him to violate federal law,” Castro said.


Castro also wants to see a change in the president’s pardoning power “so that if a president is under investigation, he or she is not able to pardon someone who may have been a witness or a conspirator,” he said.


But when Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, the second-highest ranking member of the Senate, was asked about Cohen’s allegations, he said: “Having been a lawyer and a judge, I just think we ought to see how this thing plays itself out in the courts. It’s hard to make a rush to judgment.”  


Castro says he's not optimistic that Congress will address possible crimes or pardoning power before the midterm elections.


Ryan Poppe can be reached at rpoppe@tpr.org or on Twitter @RyanPoppe1