Congressional Investigations: Subpoenas and Contempt Power

Description:

When conducting investigations of the executive branch, congressional committees and Members of Congress generally receive the information required for legislative needs. If agencies fail to cooperate or the President invokes executive privilege, Congress can turn to a number of legislative powers that are likely to compel compliance. The two techniques described in this report are the issuance of subpoenas and the holding of executive officials in contempt. These techniques usually lead to an accommodation that meets the needs of both branches. Litigation is used at times, but federal judges generally encourage congressional and executive parties to settle their differences out of court. The specific examples in this report explain how information disputes arise and how they are resolved.

Creator(s):
Creation Date: April 2, 2003
Partner(s):
UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Collection(s):
Congressional Research Service Reports
Usage:
Total Uses: 58
Past 30 days: 8
Yesterday: 0
Creator (Author):
Creator (Author):
Publisher Info:
Place of Publication: Washington D.C., USA
Date(s):
  • Creation: April 2, 2003
Description:

When conducting investigations of the executive branch, congressional committees and Members of Congress generally receive the information required for legislative needs. If agencies fail to cooperate or the President invokes executive privilege, Congress can turn to a number of legislative powers that are likely to compel compliance. The two techniques described in this report are the issuance of subpoenas and the holding of executive officials in contempt. These techniques usually lead to an accommodation that meets the needs of both branches. Litigation is used at times, but federal judges generally encourage congressional and executive parties to settle their differences out of court. The specific examples in this report explain how information disputes arise and how they are resolved.

Physical Description:

42 pages.

Language(s):
Subject(s):
Partner:
UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Collection:
Congressional Research Service Reports
Identifier:
Resource Type: Report
Format: Text