Rep. Gerald E. Connolly (D-Va.), a member of the Oversight Committee, said Trump’s moves are “triggering a constitutional crisis” and argued that the White House posture shouldn’t just concern Democrats but Republicans as well. The House, he said, should revisit the idea of instructing the sergeant at arms to find and jail those who defy subpoenas until they relent, a step Congress hasn’t taken since the 1870s.
“If [Trump] were to prevail in this fight, then you will permanently debase the role of the legislative branch of government and fundamentally alter the constitutional framework,” Connolly said. “We cannot let that happen. . . . The consequences would radically alter the balance of power in our government.”
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, recently suggested fining obstinate Trump officials who refused to comply with subpoenas — even jailing them, according to Bloomberg News. On a Monday night call with fellow Democrats, Rep. Jared Huffman (D-Calif.) suggested that the House should impeach the IRS commissioner for refusing to provide Trump’s tax returns, information Congress has traditionally obtained upon request under the law.