White House Counsel Pat Cipollone sent a letter to Nancy Pelosi and the chairs of the House Intelligence, Foreign Affairs, and Oversight and Reform Committees, essentially throwing a tantrum.
“No, no, no! Won’t testify, you are picking on the President!”
Reports are that faces in the White House are turning blue.
IANAL, but it’s a pretty bad letter. I will wait for Lawfare and Just Security to publish their pieces on it, which I suspect will be multiple. Just dealing with the first three paragraphs could expand to multiple pages.
The argument is that the House is doing everything wrong and is an illegitimate part of government.
All of this violates the Constitution, the rule of law, and every past precedent.
Emphasis in the document.
A few early legal opinions.
That's an unusually whiny and weak letter. Basically reads like something Lou Dobbs would shout.https://t.co/MIKDot55fV
— MaliciousKangarooHat (@Popehat) October 8, 2019
It’s well-settled precedent that you can’t impeach a president in an election year. Obviously.
— Chris Curtis (@curtosys) October 8, 2019
The official White House position is that they’ll only cooperate with an impeachment inquiry if Congress ends the impeachment inquiry. https://t.co/1hvDIn0csg
— Jon Favreau (@jonfavs) October 8, 2019
Wow. This letter is bananas. A barely-lawyered temper tantrum. A middle finger to Congress and its oversight responsibilities.
No Member of Congress should accept it, no matter his or her view on the behavior of Pelosi, Schiff, or Trump.
Things are bad. Things will get worse. https://t.co/AesJ6cGHrl
— Gregg Nunziata (@greggnunziata) October 8, 2019
President can't be impeached because he has a country to run is not a winning argument. https://t.co/G1dwPYgFB4
— Jameel Jaffer (@JameelJaffer) October 8, 2019
They are basically arguing that the president is above accountability to anyone or any institution—that the executive is above and not co-equal to the other branches of government. https://t.co/GOAlQjCX9z
— Ankit Panda (@nktpnd) October 8, 2019
It is a letter contemptuous of Constitutional governance; utterly devoid of intelligence, tact, or even the guile to which we have become accustomed. An inquiry is an investigation, not a trial. Process points made in letter are completely irrelevant and don’t justify obstruction
— Frank Jannuzi (@FrankJannuzi) October 8, 2019
The floor is now open to the Balloon Juice jackals, and also open thread.