In a letter to House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), the lawyer for former White House Counsel Don McGahn, explains that his client is unable to produced the subpoenaed documents the committee request per White House Counsel Pat Cipollone’s instructions.
According to McGahn’s lawyer, William Burck, Cipollone explained, “that Acting Chief Mick Mulvaney, who I understand is the custodian of documents for the White House, has directed that Mr. McGahn not produce the White House documents because they implicate significant Executive Branch confidentiality interests and executive privilege.”
Burck goes on to explain in his letter that “Where co-equal branches of government are making contradictory demands,” of McGahn “concerning the same set of documents,” McGahn’s “appropriate response is to maintain the status quo unless the Committee and the Executive Branch can reach an accommodation.”
He apologizes to Nadler for missing the deadline, explaining that he was waiting for Cipollone’s letter so he could include a copy.
Cipollone’s letter to Burck can be found at Axios.com.
Why It Matters
The White House’s new approach to Congressional oversight seems to be ignoring lawful subpoenas, just Monday, Secretary of Treasury refused to turn over to Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA) lawfully requested six years of tax returns and returns information for President Trump.
As CNN notes the original request for the tax information was sent to IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig.
It is essential to the make-up of our Constitutional Republic that Congress whether the majority is Democrats or Republicans be allowed to perform the checks and balances on any Executive Branch.
In short, just as was laid out in Mueller’s Report, the President and his administration are continuing to obstruct justice and stonewall Congressional Oversight.