Trump appears to have committed crime in office: congressional chairman

Chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform Committee Elijah Cummings (D-MD) waves his gavel as Michael Cohen, the former personal attorney of U.S. President Donald Trump, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., February 27, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – It appears President Donald Trump committed a crime, the chairman of the U.S. House Oversight Committee said on Wednesday, but he declined to say whether he should be removed from office.

“It appears he did,” Democratic Chairman Elijah Cummings told reporters when asked after a day-long hearing with Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen, if he believed Trump committed a crime as president.

“(But) that’s not for me to say. That’s based on what’s already been found,” Cummings told reporters, referring to the fact that Cohen had admitted to breaking campaign finance laws at Trump’s direction in a guilty plea last year.

Cummings declined to say whether he thought Trump had committed impeachable offenses.

“I need to study the transcripts and see what we have. Keep in mind I want to proceed very cautiously,” he said.

Reporting by Lisa Lambert and Andy Sullivan; Editing by James Dalgleish

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