Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker said he will not testify before the House Judiciary Committee on Friday after Democrats on the panel voted to authorize the use of a subpoena against him if he did not attend or refused to answer certain questions even though he was already voluntarily attending.
Whitaker had this to say, “Such unprecedented action breaches our prior agreement and circumvents the constitutionally required accommodation process. Based upon today’s action, it is apparent that the Committee’s true intention is not to discuss the great work of the Department of Justice, but to create a public spectacle. Political theater is not the purpose of an oversight hearing, and I will not allow that to be the case.”
Whitaker gave Democrats a deadline of 6 p.m. Thursday to respond about their threat to subpoena him.
The Judiciary Committee voted 23-13 along party lines to authorize a subpoena for Whitaker if he did not appear before the panel or declined to answer certain questions.
The preemptive move to authorize a subpoena signals how Democrats will aggressively pursue testimony from Trump administration officials.
Republican, Doug Collins from Georgia, said “this turn of events is a result of Democrats overplaying their hand” he went on to say “In a quest to score political points against the president, they authorized a preemptive subpoena, treating a voluntary witness as hostile.”
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