- The Washington Times - Friday, July 19, 2019

House Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings requested Friday the U.S. attorney overseeing the probe into alleged campaign finance violations give lawmakers information as to why President Trump wasn’t indicted along with his former personal attorney Michael Cohen.

In a letter sent to Audrey Strauss, the deputy U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, the Maryland Democrat said he wants to know if the internal Justice Department policy against indicting a president was a factor they considered when wrapping up their probe into the hush money payments to Stormy Daniels, who claims to have had an affair with Mr. Trump.

Mr. Cummings said the same policy prevented Special Counsel Robert Mueller from bringing obstruction of justice charges against Mr. Trump.

“The Office of the President should not be used as a shield for criminal conduct,” Mr. Cummings said.

The committee’s request comes after the Southern District of New York concluded its investigation earlier this week after only having indicted Cohen, who plead guilty and received a three-year prison sentence.

Cohen previously told lawmakers he made the payment ahead of the 2016 election to quiet Ms. Daniels at the direction of then-candidate Donald Trump.

Mr. Cummings asked Ms. Strauss to produce any information related to individuals who conspired with Cohen by August 2.

A Republican spokesperson from the committee said Cohen is a habitual liar and a convicted felon, yet Democrats continue to use him to attack the president.

“Democrats in Congress should be solving real problems instead of indulging their obsession with impeaching the president,” the GOP spokesperson said.

• Alex Swoyer can be reached at aswoyer@washingtontimes.com.

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