September 16, 2019

Congressman Brad Sherman Responds to Mueller Hearings

Congressman Brad Sherman (D-Northridge)

Jewish Congressman Brad Sherman (D-Northridge), who represents the Western San Fernando Valley, and who was the first member of Congress to file articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, praised his Democratic colleagues on the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees after their questioning of former Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III on July 24.

“I think the Democrats as a team did a very good job, and look, the fact that somebody would get the Kremlin endorsement and help — do you know what that would’ve done to any candidate in the past? That candidate would implode right there — boom, you’re gone,” Sherman told the Journal the day after the Mueller hearings.

Mueller spent two years investigating whether the Russians interfered in the 2016 presidential election and whether Trump attempted to obstruct the investigation.

Republicans criticized Mueller’s performance during the hearing, saying it finally ended impeachment discussion surrounding the president, but Sherman said the hearing underscored how inappropriate Trump’s actions were during the campaign.

“The main takeaway continues to be it is obvious the American president has committed high crimes and misdemeanors,” Sherman said. 

“The main takeaway continues to be it is obvious the American president has committed high crimes and misdemeanors.” — Rep. Brad Sherman 

Asked if there was any possibility the Democratic-controlled House would now move forward with impeachment proceedings, Sherman said it would take a change of opinion in the Republican-held U.S. Senate and a shift in public sentiment.

Even if impeachment does not happen, Sherman said that as a result of the Mueller hearing, the American public was more educated about what took place during the 2016 presidential campaign. However, he added there was nothing shocking about the testimony. 

“There weren’t substantive surprises. There were no bombshells. I think Mueller’s performance was panned. I don’t buy into that,” Sherman said. “I think he was direct. I’ve never seen a witness answer so many questions so quickly.”

While the hearings highlighted the Trump campaign’s welcoming of Russian interference during the election, Sherman said he did not think that helped decide the outcome of the 2016 election. 

“I think it’s apparent that this president sought and was appreciative of Russian support,” Sherman said. “I don’t think the Russian support was decisive in the election. We’ll never know.”

Jewish Congressman Adam Schiff (D-Burbank), who represents the 28th District and is chair of the House Intelligence Committee, weighed in on Twitter after the daylong hearing, stating the main takeaways from Mueller’s testimony was that Russia interfered in the election to help Trump; Russia made numerous contacts with Trump’s campaign; the campaign welcomed the help; no one reported these contacts; and the Trump campaign lied to cover it up.

The day after the hearings, Schiff told CNN that impeaching Trump was not realistic despite Trump’s wrongdoings. The only way Trump was leaving office, Schiff said, is if he is voted out in 2020.