President Donald Trump said this week that he does not want former White House counsel Don McGahn to testify before Congress — and a former Watergate prosecutor told CNN’s John Berman Friday that the president has no power to stop McGahn’s testimony.
Appearing on CNN, attorney David Dorsen told Berman that it would be ridiculous for Trump to assert executive privilege over McGahn’s testimony after he previously waived that privilege to have him cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.
“President Trump just makes things up,” he said. “We had total access to everything in Watergate. The idea that what is going on now is unprecedented is just false.”
He also said that he doubted McGahn would actually resist a Congressional subpoena like Trump wants because “he’s going to have to testify or go to jail.”
He then finished up by saying Trump seems to completely lack an understanding about the actual powers he’s been given under the United States Constitution.
“President Trump says, ‘I won’t let him testify’ — it’s not for President Trump to decide whether he will let a witness testify, now a private citizen, before a house of Congress,” he said. “They are equal branches of the government and they could subpoena him and have him testify without the permission of the president… I just think the president has an exaggerated view of his status and powers.”
Watch the video below.
White House aides want Trump to stop saying his Ukraine phone call was ‘perfect’: CNN’s Jim Acosta
On Monday's edition of CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360," chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta said President Donald Trump's aides were frustrated with the president's defense of his phone call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky, in which he apparently tried to use military aid to extort political dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden.
Furthermore, there is fear in the White House that some Republicans may defect and vote to impeach the president — which would wreck their narrative.
"I just spoke with a source close to the White House a short while ago who objected to the president continuing to say that his phone call with the leader of the Ukraine was 'perfect,'" said Acosta. "Nobody really is echoing that message on behalf of the president. It doesn't seem that anybody here in Washington, except for the most partisan of partisans feels, that the president's phone call with the leader of Ukraine was perfect."
House Democrat smacks down Trump’s claim of ‘doctored’ transcripts: ‘Those transcripts are reviewed by those witnesses’
On Monday's edition of CNN's "OutFront," during a discussion of acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney's legal situation, Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA) trashed President Donald Trump's claim that the transcripts from the impeachment hearings were somehow falsified.
"I will say that the craziness continues," said Connolly. "For the president today to assert, based on nothing, the transcripts were doctored and don't really reflect the deposition of the witnesses we heard from — and by the way, those transcripts are reviewed by those witnesses and their attorneys before they're released for accuracy — but secondly, of course, to have the chief of staff of the president actually suing his own White House to get a decision about whether or not he's required to respond to congressional demand for testimony or the White House directive really brings us into all-new territory in terms of craziness. And it's really disturbing to watch."
Trump’s decision to cut off Ukraine aid is something ‘you would expect to read about in a dictatorship’: Ex-Obama official
On Monday's edition of CNN's "The Situation Room," former Obama administration official and national security analyst Samantha Vinograd excoriated President Donald Trump for his decision — further laid out in newly released House transcripts — to suspend military aid to Ukraine.
"This process that is described and echoed in other depositions is a process that you would expect to read about in a dictatorship, where a leader rules by fiat and his national security team scrambles to find a legal justification and to sell a bill of goods to legislators and the American people about why the president has made a certain decision," said Vinograd.