Published: Sat, February 09, 2019
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

Acting attorney general Whitaker scheduled to testify to Congress

Acting attorney general Whitaker scheduled to testify to Congress

Nadler, who was the only Democrat to question Whitaker before they recessed for votes, pushed the acting attorney general hard about his involvement with the Mueller investigation.

"In your capacity as acting attorney general, have you ever been asked to approve any action or request to be taken by the special counsel?"

After a round of follow-ups, Jeffries concluded by demanding Whitaker not interfere in Mueller's investigation.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep.

Mr. Swalwell didn't backdown, demanding Mr. Whitaker say that, speaking directly to the president through the hearing. "We now have had the curtain drop down, and Mr. Whitaker, I guess your confirmation hearing's here".

On social media, critics expressed shock at Whitaker's conduct, with some asserting that his rebuke of Nadler-like Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh's angry testimony before a Senate committee in September-was likely for President Donald Trump's benefit. After conversations with the committee, a department spokeswoman said, Nadler agreed that the committee would not issue a subpoena tomorrow if Whitaker voluntarily appears at the hearing.

"Nadler did so because during the past two years when the GOP controlled Congress, Trump Administration officials would routinely refuse to answer questions without invoking executive privilege", Mariotti said.

Answering questions from Nadler, Whitaker said he hasn't spoken with Mr. Trump or senior White House officials about the Mueller probe. Whitaker indicated he would not appear unless Nadler withdrew the subpoena.

"On November 14, 2018, as the incoming chairmen of the four House committees of jurisdiction, we sent a letter requesting that you produce eight categories of documents relating to your work on behalf of World Patent Marketing and your communications with Scott Cooper, the company's CEO and founder", the letter said.

Georgia Rep. Doug Collins, the top Republican on the panel, called the subpoena authorization "political theater" before the vote.

In a statement on Thursday night, Kerri Kupec, a Whitaker spokeswoman, said that the acting attorney general had been assured that Nadler would not issue a subpoena "on or before February 8".

It also followed a Thursday threat from Whitaker to not appear amid reports that Democrats were considering issuing a subpoena to compel him to answer particular questions.

Whitaker: "Mr. Chairman, your five-minutes are up". William Barr, Trump's nominee to be his permanent Attorney General, is on track to be confirmed by the full Senate next week. "He's an outstanding person, a very very fine man", Trump said during a presidential memorandum signing in the Oval Office Thursday.

"I'm thinking about maybe we just set up a popcorn machine in the back because that's what this is becoming".

Whitaker's refusal to answer her question is important because it calls into question whether or not Trump picked him to temporarily replace Sessions because he, unlike Rod Rosenstein, could be counted on to carry the president's water concerning the Russian Federation probe.

Democrats on the Ways and Means committee have taken the first step to obtain Mr Trump's tax returns, which he refused to publicly release during the 2016 campaign. Deliberations between the president and his advisors should be kept confidential because otherwise people won't give him the blunt advice he might need.

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