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Can Congress Enforce their Subpoenas?

Federalist Society Article I Project Executive Director Nate Kaczmarek interviews Good Government Now President Dr. William J. Murphy about GGN’s inerent contempt fines and independent congressional criminal contempt prosecution proposals in Episode 52 of the Federalist Society’s Necessary & Proper podcast published January 7, 2020.

Good Government Now President
Dr. William J. Murphy

Good Government Now (GGN) President Dr. William J. Murphy discusses the proposal GGN has developed to strengthen congressional subpoena enforcement capacity. The proposal would establish an inherent contempt enforcement process whereby Congress could conduct trials of, convict, and directly sanction executive branch officials who defy congressional subpoenas with heavy personal fines ranging from $25,000 to $250,000. It also features a provision authorizing Congress to appoint private attorneys to prosecute persistently recalcitrant executive branch witnesses for criminal contempt in the event the inherent contempt fines are insufficient to motivate their compliance with a subpoena, an unfortunate necessity given the refusal of DOJ to undertake such prosecutions since 2006.  More information about these proposals is available on our website at: Inherent Contempt Enforcement Rule or

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