Trump meant ‘game over’: Congress won’t get far, ‘I don’t want people testifying’ to these partisan hacks
President Donald Trump indicated in an interview Tuesday that he doesn’t plan to offer congressional Democrat investigators the same transparency he’d granted special counsel Robert Mueller.
During Mueller’s investigation into Russian collusion, the president allowed the special counsel unrestricted access to the White House’s trove of documents and aides as needed.
Speaking with The Washington Post on Tuesday, he argued that Democrats don’t deserve the same courtesy because they’re “obviously very partisan” and just trying to score political points.
“I allowed my lawyers and all the people to go and testify to Mueller — and you know how I feel about that whole group of people that did the Mueller report,” he said. “I was so transparent; they testified for so many hours. They have all of that information that’s been given.”
Despite unrestricted access to the White House, not to mention the Justice Department’s wide array of resources, Mueller was unable to uncover any substantial evidence of wrongdoing.
Instead of accepting the special counsel’s conclusions, congressional Democrats have launched their own investigation — one that the president appears to have dismissed as a partisan witch hunt.
“There is no reason to go any further, and especially in Congress where it’s very partisan — obviously very partisan,” he said, adding that he doesn’t want his aides helping the Democrats in their quest. “I don’t want people testifying to a party, because that is what they’re doing if they do this.”
The White House plans to fight a subpoena issued by the House Judiciary Committee for former White House counsel Don McGahn to testify by reportedly exerting executive privilege over his testimony .
McGahn has become infamous for the allegedly “total bullsh-t” testimonials he made to Mueller and others about the “crazy shit” that the president had allegedly asked him to do.
“The Trump administration also plans to oppose other requests from House committees for the testimony of current and former aides about actions in the White House described in special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s report,” the Post reported, citing its usual anonymous sources.
However, the president cautioned in his interview that the current White House counsel hasn’t actually “made a final, final decision” yet on whether to block aides from speaking with Democrats.
While speaking with reporters about McGahn in particular, White House spokesman Hogan Gidley likewise confirmed that the final decision will “be up to the attorneys.”
During an appearance Tuesday morning on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom” Tuesday morning, he added that all Democrats are really doing is stoking more anti-Trump paranoia and conspiracy theories among their already severely unhealthily obsessed base.
“What I am concerned about though is that Democrats like Jerry Nadler continue to try to attack this president and attack members of this administration repeatedly,” he said.
“He’s not going to learn anything else about Don McGahn or this administration that Bob Mueller didn’t find in two years of wasted time and energy. The only thing he is going to gain quite frankly, are maybe some political allies at the far left who are conspiracy theorists and think somehow it was a sham. But in fact, the only sham that existed was the lie pushed by the Democrats and so many in the mainstream media on this president and his administration.”
Democrats have pushed back on the White House by arguing that these attempts to block current and former aides from testifying amount to “stonewalling.”
“Now we see the administration engaging in stonewalling of the facts coming to the American people,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi reportedly said Tuesday.
It’s unclear what she meant, given as all the relevant facts were already laid out in Mueller’s report.
As for House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, he’s outright dismissed the White House’s plans to exert executive privilege over McGahn’s testimony.
“The Committee has served a valid subpoena to Mr. McGahn. We have asked him to supply documents to the Committee by May 7 and to testify here on May 21. Our request covers the subjects described by Mr. McGahn to the Special Counsel, and described by Special Counsel Mueller to the American public in his report,” he said in a statement published to Medium on Tuesday.
“As such, the moment for the White House to assert some privilege to prevent this testimony from being heard has long since passed. I suspect that President Trump and his attorneys know this to be true as a matter of law – and that this evening’s reports, if accurate, represent one more act of obstruction by an Administration desperate to prevent the public from talking about the President’s behavior. The Committee’s subpoena stands. I look forward to Mr. McGahn’s testimony.”
The battle over McGahn comes amid another battle over former White House personnel security director Carl Kline. On Tuesday the House Oversight Committee moved to hold him in contempt of Congress for not appearing at a hearing regarding the White House’s alleged security issues.
Kline reportedly failed to show up as per orders by White House deputy counsel Michael M. Purpura.
“The White House and Mr. Kline now stand in open defiance of a duly authorized congressional subpoena with no assertion of any privilege of any kind by President Trump,” committee chair Elijah E. Cummings said in a statement Tuesday.
“Based on these actions, it appears that the President believes that the Constitution does not apply to his White House, that he may order officials at will to violate their legal obligations, and that he may obstruct attempts by Congress to conduct oversight.”