The chairmen of three House committees subpoenaed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo Friday over his failure to produce documents relating to Donald Trump administration’s dealings with Ukraine.
It is the latest move in rapidly escalating impeachment proceedings against Trump, who is being scrutinized for allegedly pressuring Ukraine’s president to investigate Democratic rival Joe Biden.
Rep Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, issued the subpoena in consultation with House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff and House Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings, who have been probing Trump’s solicitation of foreign help in the 2020 election.
“The subpoenaed documents shall be part of the impeachment inquiry and shared among the Committees. Your failure or refusal to comply with the subpoena shall constitute evidence of obstruction of the House’s impeachment inquiry,” the three chairmen wrote in a letter to Pompeo.
The State Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The move by the chairmen, however, suggests the House is moving rapidly to advance its fledgling efforts to investigate and draw up articles of impeachment related to Trump’s conduct toward Ukraine.
The House subpoena was accompanied by a schedule of depositions for senior State Department officials who have been identified as important players in the Ukraine episode — which was first brought to Congress’ attention by an intelligence community whistleblower.
The whistleblower, whose story was deemed “urgent” and “credible” by an agency watchdog, indicated that Trump had abused his power to pressure Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to help his reelection chances during a phone call — and then the transcript of the call was inappropriately hidden on a highly classified server.
In a separate development on Friday, the US special envoy for Ukraine negotiations, Kurt Volker, resigned, US media reported.