Speed Reads

Trump Impeachment Watch

The White House won't list any demands to stop stonewalling the House impeachment inquiry

The White House informed the House on Tuesday that it does not intend to cooperate with the impeachment inquiry of President Trump, in what The Washington Post describes as a "scathing eight-page letter" that "lacked substantive legal arguments and echoed Trump's political broadsides." Gregg Nunziata, a former counsel for Senate Republicans and staffer for Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), called the letter "bananas," "a barely-lawyered temper tantrum," and "a middle finger to Congress and its oversight responsibilities."

Rep. Justin Amash (I-Mich.), a recent GOP exile, agreed.

"The White House should be warned that continued efforts to hide the truth of the president's abuse of power from the American people will be regarded as further evidence of obstruction," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) responded in a statement. "Mr. President, you are not above the law. You will be held accountable."

For their part, the Post notes, "Republicans have rallied to defend the president and support the White House's assertion that the impeachment inquiry 'suffers from a separate, fatal defect' because the House has not yet taken a floor vote to establish formal procedures for the impeachment inquiry." But when reporters asked a senior administration official if the White House would cooperate after Pelosi held such a vote, the answer definitely wasn't yes.

In fact, "Trump has regularly told White House officials that he does not want to cooperate with the House committees conducting oversight," the Post reports, quoting a White House official who said Trump "was livid last week after the release of text messages from Kurt Volker [special envoy to Ukraine], and news accounts from testimony that seemed to undercut his administration's case."