President Donald Trump said Tuesday that he does not want his current or former aides to testify before various Democratic-controlled congressional committees in their attempts to oversee his administration.
Trump argued in an interview with The Washington Post that having his current or former aides talk to Democrats in Congress is unnecessary after the release of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report.
“There is no reason to go any further, and especially in Congress, where it’s very partisan – obviously very partisan,” Trump told the paper.
Trump’s comments articulate the White House’s strategy of fighting back against House Democrats’ press for a flurry of information. This week has already seen the White House potentially seeking to prevent former White House counsel Don McGahn from testifying before Congress under subpoena, as well as instructing a security official not to comply with another subpoena from House Democrats.
Trump said the White House Counsel’s Office has not “made a final, final decision” about asserting executive privilege to block testimony to Congress and he accused Democrats of using the investigations for political gain.
“I don’t want people testifying to a party, because that is what they’re doing if they do this,” he told the Post.
The President claimed that his administration had cooperated fully with the Mueller investigation despite his professed misgivings about the special counsel’s team.
“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,” Trump said.
“I was so transparent; they testified for so many hours,” he added, arguing that House Democrats “have all of that information that’s been given.”
The President said he “fully understood” his choice at the onset to allow his aides to testify before the special counsel, positing how “I could have taken the absolute opposite route.”