“You don’t get to work for Donald Trump, and then whine about ‘bullies.”
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told the chairmen of three House committees on Tuesday that he had no intention of obeying subpoenas for documents and depositions by other State Department officials, a day before the deadline for responding to House Democrats’ orders.
Pompeo told House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot L. Engel (D-N.Y.), House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), and House Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.) that their subpoena for documents regarding President Donald Trump’s communications with the Ukrainian government amounted to “bullying.”
The subpoena “can be understood only as an attempt to ‘intimidate, bully, and treat improperly, the distinguished professionals of the Department of State,'” wrote the secretary.
Pompeo’s response amounted to an obstruction of House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry, tweeted journalist Judd Legum.
The Trump administration is now actively obstructing the impeachment inquiry https://t.co/e9lC0wa9gx
— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) October 1, 2019
The inquiry began last week after Democrats learned that Trump had asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate 2020 Democratic candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter.
Pompeo was the first administration official to be subpoenaed. Rudy Guiliani, the president’s lawyer, was issued a subpoena Monday to provide information about his alleged pressuring of Ukraine to investigate the Bidens.
Also on Monday, the Wall Street Journal reported that Pompeo—who for days had claimed to have little knowledge of Trump’s call with Zelensky, as he had not yet read the transcript—was in fact on the phone call.
Pompeo is “in this up to his ears,” tweeted journalist Lili Loofbourow.
REMINDER: Pompeo was ON THE PHONE CALL Trump made to Zelensky–which became grounds for the impeachment inquiry–but last week, before that was known, he claimed he couldn’t comment because he hadn’t “read the transcript.” He’s in this up to this ears. https://t.co/9wILxypyKv
— Lili Loofbourow (@Millicentsomer) October 1, 2019
Contrary to Pompeo’s complaint, some critics said on social media, Pompeo’s refusal to respond to elected representatives’ demands amounted to the bullying of the American people.
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) October 1, 2019
— Jon Cryer (@MrJonCryer) October 1, 2019
Some also noted the contrast between the Trump administration’s response to Congress’s demands regarding allegations that the president sought to bribe a foreign power to gain assistance winning the 2020 election, and that of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who spent 11 hours testifying about the deaths of four Americans in a 2012 attack in Benghazi, Libya.
Pompeo, who was among the Republicans on a House select committee who aggressively questioned Clinton in 2015, is also continuing to investigate the former secretary of state amid developing news about Trump’s impeachment inquiry.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton: Sure I’ll testify for 11 hours. No problem.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo: I will hide behind my staff forever even though I lied to you all and was on the call with Ukraine. https://t.co/iRUrN5mDBO
— Neera Tanden (@neeratanden) October 1, 2019
Benghazi: @HillaryClinton testified for 11 hours
— Chris Lu (@ChrisLu44) October 1, 2019
Pompeo was given until Friday, Oct. 4 to produce the documents requested by the committees. Former U.S. ambassador to the Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch was scheduled to give a deposition Wednesday, with other depositions by Kurt Volker, former envoy to Ukraine; Deputy Assistant Secretary George Kent; U.S. ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland; and State Department Counselor T. Ulrich Brechbuhl planned for the coming days.
Pompeo’s apparent plan to direct the officials not to give depositions amounts to “blatant obstruction,” one critic tweeted.
Secretary Pompeo has instructed his Department’s aides and officials not to comply with Congressional subpoenas.
This is blatant obstruction.
You’d think a man who once headed the CIA wouldn’t actually side with the President who was caught conspiring against the United States.
— Jordan Fisher 🏳️🌈 (@jordanwfisher_) October 1, 2019
WATCH: Saturday Night Live airs Christmas special — that’s just one giant dig at the Electoral College
NBC's "Saturday Night Live" aired an opening skit that was just one giant attack on the electoral college.
A snowman introduced the segment, saying that we could look in on the holiday table conversation thanks to hacked Nest cams.
The skit featured a house in San Francisco, California, a second in Charleston, South Carolina and a third in Atlanta, Georgia.
Each dinner table debated impeachment, and the differences between President Donald Trump and his predecessor, President Barack Obama.
But then the snowman said that none of their votes matter.
"They'll debate the issues all year long, but then it all comes down to 1,000 people in Wisconsin who won't even think about the election until the morning of," the snowman said. "And that's the magic of the Electoral College."
Georgia mayor being recalled for racism resigns from office: report
Hoschton Mayor Theresa Kenerly resigned in a special city council meeting held on Saturday, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported Saturday.
"The resignation came just days after Councilman Jim Cleveland resigned saying he‘d rather leave office on his own terms than face voters in a recall election next month," the newspaper reported. "Both resignations follow an AJC investigation launched seven months ago into claims that an African American candidate for city administrator was sidetracked by Mayor Theresa Kenerly because of his race."
Nine 2020 Democrats unite to demand DNC Chair Tom Perez scrap debate rules: report
The Democratic National Committee is facing a revolt for the party's 2020 presidential candidates for its restrictive debate rules.
"Nine Democratic presidential candidates, including the party's front-runners, are urging the Democratic National Committee to toss out the current polling and fundraising rules used to determine who appears in televised debates and reopen the exchanges to better reflect the historic diversity of the current field. The candidates say the rules exclude diverse candidates in the field from participating," CBS News reported Saturday evening.