The White House has decided it’s going to stonewall every single effort Democrats make at performing their constitutional oversight responsibilities of the executive branch. As Oversight Committee Chair Elijah Cummings writes in the Washington Post, the White House hasn’t handed over a single document to his committee.
I serve as chairman of the Oversight and Reform Committee, the primary investigative body in the House of Representatives. I have sent 12 letters to the White House on a half-dozen topics — some routine and some relating to our core national security interests. In response, the White House has refused to hand over any documents or produce any witnesses for interviews.
The White House also hasn’t made a single official available to testify to the panel, which is investigating the process the White House used to grant security clearances to people who were reportedly rejected for those clearances by career professionals. It’s an urgent matter of national security on which the White House is completely blocking Congress.
House Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler has run into the same brick wall. After making a swath of document requests related to its investigation into Trump’s corruption, obstruction, and abuse of power. The deadline for that request was Monday, but the White House didn’t so much as bother to send a customary note outlining its reasons for refusing to comply.
Overall, the Trump administration has refused to cooperate with the requests of 12 House committees on at least 30 different occasions over the last two months, Democrats told Politico. It’s a complete departure from previous administrations like those of Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama, which tried to negotiate with Congress over access to the information lawmakers sought.
“I think they have an arrogant attitude toward Congress,” said Charles Tiefer, a former solicitor and deputy general counsel of the House told Politico. “You have to go back to the Nixon administration to find this.”