The Republican chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee has explained to GOP colleagues that it is the fault of Donald Trump, Jr. that he was subpoenaed, The New York Times reported Monday.
“Allies of Donald Trump Jr. may have stirred up a firestorm among Republicans over a subpoena to recall the president’s eldest son to the Senate Intelligence Committee, but the panel’s Republican chairman has suggested to colleagues that the standoff is of the younger Mr. Trump’s making,” The Times reported.
“Twice in recent months Donald Trump Jr. agreed to sit for voluntary interviews with the Intelligence Committee, only to later back out, Senator Richard M. Burr of North Carolina, the panel’s chairman, told colleagues privately last week,” the newspaper explained, citing two people familiar with the remarks.
“The chairman said at a senators-only luncheon last Thursday that the evasions had left the committee no choice but to issue a subpoena on April 8 to give senators a chance to directly question the younger Mr. Trump as they seek to tie up loose ends on their investigation of Russian election interference,” The Times added.
The process of scheduling the follow-up interview reportedly began in December, with the president’s namesake son voluntarily agreeing to interviews in March and then April.
And Trump, Jr.’s lawyers were reportedly warned the subpoena would be forthcoming if he cancelled the second interview.
“It was only after his lawyers sought to postpone the April session, after also having done so in March, that the committee warned the Trump team that it was losing patience, the people said Mr. Burr told senators. If Mr. Trump did not show up, committee staff members told the lawyers, Mr. Burr would be forced to issue a subpoena,” The Times noted.
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