On Wednesday, Judge Vyskocil denied a request by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg for a TRO enjoining the enforcement of the subpoena issued to Mark F. Pomerantz by Congressman Jim Jordan in his role as Chair of the House Committee on the Judiciary. We previously covered DA Bragg’s TRO and Complaint here.
Before addressing the merits of the TRO request, Judge Vyskocil faulted DA Bragg for filing the order to show cause for the TRO without notice to Defendants and before serving them with the Complaint. She characterized the first 35 pages of the Complaint as “nothing short of a public relations tirade against former President and current presidential candidate Donald Trump,” before concluding “that this action is merely a motion to quash a subpoena dressed up as a lawsuit.”
In considering the merits of the dispute, which she characterized as a “political dogfight,” Judge Vyskocil found that while DA Bragg has standing to challenge the subpoena issued to Mr. Pomerantz, he was not likely to succeed in that challenge. She found that the subpoena “was issued with a ‘valid legislative purpose’ in connection with the ‘broad’ and ‘indispensable’ congressional power to ‘conduct investigations.'” Judge Vyskocil noted that the Manhattan DA’s office had used federal forfeiture funds in its investigations of former President Trump, and that “the Committee was considering ‘potential legislative reforms,’ such as ‘broadening the existing statutory right of removal of certain criminal cases from state court to federal court.’” She also stated, without deciding, that Representative Jordan and the Committee are likely immune from suit under the Speech or Debate Clause.
Judge Vyskocil held that Mr. Pomerantz must appear for the congressional deposition.
On Thursday, the Second Circuit granted DA Bragg’s emergency motion for an administrative stay of the subpoena “so that a three-judge panel may consider the motion seeking a stay pending appeal of the District Court’s order.” A hearing date has not yet been set.