It’s a good thing the DOJ did not wait for a ruling from Judge Howell. Instead, a three-judge panel of the DC Circuit Court of Appeals has issued an emergency administrative stay; blocking the release of the Mueller grand jury materials to the House Judiciary Committee pending the court review of the appeal from the DOJ.
In my humble opinion, activist judge Howell was going to wait to rule on the stay motion until after the House voted on their resolution creating the framework for their ‘impeachment inquiry. With that vote, Howell would likely have ruled against the ‘stay’ motion. The direct move to the appeals court impedes Howell’s judicial agenda.
The appellate court ruling avoids Howell’s outcome. Additionally, the undisclosed motive behind the House vote; to conjoin the HJC’s newly gained judicial enforcement authority, and judicial recognition of an official impeachment investigation; is somewhat softened.