Manhattan DA Sues Rep. Jim Jordan

( – Manhattan District Attorney escalated the conflict between his office and Congress with a federal lawsuit against House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan.

Jordan, a Republican from Ohio, is leading a committee investigation into Bragg’s decision to prosecute former President Donald Trump. Bragg claims he believes Trump violated campaign finance laws through his payment of “hush money” to an adult film actress to prevent her from revealing an alleged extramarital affair with Trump.

Jordan and other GOP lawmakers suspect Bragg’s case is politically motivated and on shaky or non-existent legal ground. The House committee has been asking for details about the prosecution. Jordan recently subpoenaed Bragg’s office for information, and Bragg says this crosses the line.

Bragg is asking the court to overrule any such subpoenas, saying they are part of “an unprecedentedly brazen and unconstitutional attack” by Congress on a sovereign state legal matter. Congress’ attempts to interfere with a state-level felony investigation have no legal merit, Bragg says, and they defy “basic principles of federalism.”

The House Judiciary Committee sent a subpoena to a former prosecutor in the Manhattan DA’s office, Mark Pomerantz. Pomerantz led that office’s Trump investigation before Bragg took over. The Committee has also subpoenaed Bragg and his office for contemporary information, and they have declined.

Trump was indicted in late March on 34 felony counts. These include allegations of falsifying business records related to the $130,000 payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels. DA Bragg’s legal theory appears to be that since the payments Trump made to keep Daniels silent benefited Trump’s presidential campaign in 2016, these payments must amount to an illegal donation to Trump’s own campaign. 

Trump has denied any wrongdoing and pleaded not guilty during his court arraignment on April 10th.

Legal theorists and observers say Bragg’s theory is dubious and stretches credibility.

Jordan’s House Judiciary Committee will be holding a hearing on April 17th on crime in New York City. 

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