Former President Donald Trump’s onetime trade adviser Peter Navarro did not appear for his scheduled deposition on Wednesday with the House select committee investigating January 6, Navarro tells CNN.
The deposition had been scheduled to take place over Webex.
In a statement provided to CNN, Navarro claims he did not show up for his deposition because of executive privilege issues.
“My hands are tied in this matter as the Executive Privilege asserted by President Trump is not my privilege to waive. The Committee has a firm legal obligation to negotiate this matter directly with Trump and his attorneys before attempting to coerce and bully me into cooperating with its highly partisan effort. If the president waives privilege, I will appear,” Navarro said.
Navarro claims that President Joe Biden waiving claims of executive privilege in this case is “illegitimate,” which has “exposed the weak underbelly” of the panel’s legal case.
Navarro predicts that his case is headed to the Supreme Court by saying, “that unconstitutional dog won’t hunt at the Supreme Court, where this case is headed – and I welcome an expedited review.”
A spokesperson for the committee did not respond to CNN’s request for comment.
On Monday, the White House informed Navarro that Biden will not assert privilege to protect him from cooperating with the select committee, nor will Biden assert immunity to prevent Navarro from testifying. Navarro responded to the White House counsel in an email saying, “Mr. Biden is not the president I worked for. Donald Trump is.”
In its subpoena letter to Navarro, the panel said it wants to speak to him because of news reports that suggest he worked with Trump ally and adviser Steve Bannon, among others, to help develop a plan to delay the certification of the 2020 presidential election results.
The panel cited lines from Navarro’s new book where he calls the plan to delay and change the outcome of the election “the Green Bay Sweep” and describes the effort as the “last, best chance to snatch a stolen election from the Democrats’ jaws of deceit.”
Navarro maintains in the book that he was among the “last three people on God’s green earth who wanted to see violence erupt” on January 6 – counting himself among the likes of Trump and Bannon.
Bannon has been indicted on criminal contempt of Congress charges after refusing to cooperate with the committee. He has pleaded not guilty.
Navarro appeared on Bannon’s podcast this week to criticize former Vice President Mike Pence for saying Trump had been wrong to claim Pence had the authority to overturn the 2020 election.
During that appearance, Navarro blasted Pence as “never a pure Trump guy” and “the prisoner of Marc Short,” a longtime Pence confidant and the former vice president’s chief of staff, who recently appeared before the House committee.
“Mike, you are dead politically,” said Navarro.