Politics

Trump: 'We're fighting all the subpoenas' from House Democrats

Key Points
  • President Trump vows to battle every subpoena lodged by House Democrats.
  • "We're fighting all the subpoenas," Trump tells reporters outside the White House, multiple outlets reported.
  • Trump and first lady Melania Trump are scheduled to headline an event on the opioid crisis in Atlanta Wednesday afternoon.
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President Trump comments on the market's record highs, unemployment numbers

President Donald Trump vowed Wednesday to battle every subpoena lodged by House Democrats.

"We're fighting all the subpoenas," Trump told reporters outside the White House, en route to an event in Georgia on the opioid crisis.

In recent months, House Democratic leaders have issued dozens of requests for information or cooperation from Trump, his administration and his associates.

Democrats are demanding testimony from high-ranking current and former White House officials, as well as years of Trump's financial records and the unredacted version of special counsel Robert Mueller's report on Russian meddling in the 2016 election..

Caught at the center of the crossfire is former White House counsel Don McGahn, who was cited by Mueller more than any other Trump official in the special counsel's 448-page report that also investigated possible Trump-campaign coordination with the Kremlin and obstruction of justice by Trump himself.

On Tuesday, Trump told The Washington Post that he did not see any reason to "go any further" in allowing his aides to testify before congressional committees, "especially in Congress where it's very partisan — obviously very partisan."

Trump has already backed up his rhetoric with action: On Monday, the president sued House Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings, D-Md., and the president's former accounting firm Mazars to block a subpoena seeking years of financial information from Trump and his businesses.

Several legal scholars have since noted that the lawsuit against the accounting firm is a long shot and appears to be more of a delay tactic than anything else. In their justification for why the courts should block the release of the president's taxes, Trump's lawyers cite case law from an 1880 ruling as their precedent. In 1927, that precedent was replaced with a much broader reading of congressional powers, which has set the legal standard ever since, although Trump's lawyers do not mention this.

"They're seeking ... to overturn the entire modern case law that the courts have put together to respect Congress' investigative power," University of Baltimore law professor Charles Tiefer told The Washington Post. "These suits look like an act of desperation by the Trump lawyers."

The subpoena for McGahn, issued by House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., is "ridiculous," Trump said outside the White House on Wednesday.

The Russia report — released with redactions Thursday — found insufficient evidence to prove that Trump's 2016 campaign coordinated with the Kremlin. Attorney General William Barr and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein further determined that the report did not show that Trump committed an obstruction of justice offense.

Senior White House advisor Kellyanne Conway said earlier Wednesday that an option to assert executive privilege to keep McGahn from testifying "is on the table."

Nadler has already rejected that move, however. "The moment for the White House to assert some privilege to prevent this testimony from being heard has long since passed," the committee chairman said in a statement Tuesday evening.

Trump spoke to the press en route to Atlanta, where he and first lady Melania Trump are scheduled to headline an event on the opioid crisis Wednesday afternoon.