A federal judge on Wednesday ruled that Mark Pomerantz, who was previously involved in the Manhattan district attorney’s criminal investigation of former President Trump, must face a House Judiciary Committee subpoena.
U.S. District Judge Mary Kay Vyskocil’s 25-page order rejects a request from Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg (D) to block House Republicans from questioning Pomerantz, who resigned from Bragg’s office last year.
“The subpoena was issued with a ‘valid legislative purpose’ in connection with the ‘broad’ and ‘indispensable’ congressional power to ‘conduct investigations,'” ruled Vyskocil, a Trump appointee. “It is not the role of the federal judiciary to dictate what legislation Congress may consider or how it should conduct its deliberations in that connection. Mr. Pomerantz must appear for the congressional deposition. No one is above the law.”
House Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) has sought to investigate Bragg’s criminal prosecution of Trump, subpoenaing Pomerantz and asking another employee to turn over personal emails about his hiring process in recent days.
Vyskocil asked the parties to reach a “mutually agreeable compromise” regarding how Pomerantz’s deposition, currently scheduled for 10 a.m. on Thursday, will proceed.
Bragg’s office filed a notice of appeal within minutes, indicating he will ask the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for emergency relief “as soon as possible this evening.” In a court filing, Bragg’s office said it has also reached out to the House Judiciary Committee to delay the deposition.
“Today’s decision shows that Congress has the ability to conduct oversight and issue subpoenas to people like Mark Pomeran[t]z, and we look forward to his deposition before the Judiciary Committee,” Russell Dye, a spokesperson for Jordan, said in a statement.
Bragg last week filed the lawsuit against Jordan to block Pomerantz’s subpoena and Jordan’s other attempts at getting information from prosecutors. Bragg portrayed the investigation as a “transparent campaign to intimidate and attack” his office’s work.
“In our federalist system, elected state and federal actors sometimes engage in political dogfights …The Court does not endorse either side’s agenda. The sole question before the Court at this time is whether Bragg has a legal basis to quash a congressional subpoena that was issued with a valid legislative purpose. He does not,” Vyskocil wrote.
Pomerantz served as one of the Manhattan district attorney’s top prosecutors on the Trump case, ultimately resigning in February 2022 soon after Bragg took office.
Pomerantz has said he resigned over Bragg’s reluctance to seek an indictment of Trump from a grand jury that was sitting at the time.
Late last month, a new grand jury ultimately returned an indictment of Trump, but on a different criminal prong that revolves around a hush payment scheme.
—Updated at 6:35 p.m.