John Bolton’s attorneys talk about testifying to Donald Trump impeachment probe

Attorneys for John Bolton are speaking to congressional staff about the former National Security Adviser testifies in the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.

The attorneys have spoken to the three House committees leading the impeachment inquiry about a possible deposition, NBC News reported.

Additionally, Democrats on Friday issued subpoenas to two Office of Management and Budget officials – Associate Director for National Security Programs Michael Duffey and Acting Director Russell Vought – to compel them to appear at a deposition on November 5, 2019 and November 6, 2019, respectively. 

Attorneys for John Bolton are speaking to congressional staff about him testifying in the impeachment inquiry into President Trump

Acting OBM director Russell Vought (above) tweeted neither her nor Michael Duffy will comply with the subpoenas issued by Democrats on Friday

Acting OBM director Russell Vought (above) tweeted neither her nor Michael Duffy will comply with the subpoenas issued by Democrats on Friday

Vought tweeted the two men would not comply with the subpoenas.

‘I saw some Fake News over the weekend to correct. As the WH letter made clear two weeks ago, OMB officials – myself and Mike Duffey – will not be complying with deposition requests this week. #shamprocess,’ he wrote.

These are the first subpoenas to be rejected in the impeachment inquiry. Other White House officials have rejected congressional subpoenas sent as part of a separate investigation into whether or not President Trump obstructed justice in special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe. 

The matter will likely end up before the courts. 

‘Your failure or refusal to appear at the deposition, including at the direction or behest of the President or the White House, shall constitute evidence of obstruction of the House’s impeachment inquiry and may be used as an adverse inference against the President,’ Representatives Adam Schiff, the Chairman of the House Intelligence panel, Eliot Engel, the Chairman of the Foreign Affairs committee, and Carolyn Maloney, the Acting Chairwoman of the Oversight panel, wrote in a letter accompanying the subpoena.

The investigation has heated up in recent weeks with a parade of witnesses walking through Capitol Hill to their behind-closed-doors testimony.

Democrats are facing pressure to move some of the queries public soon as Republicans accuse them of a lack of transparency.  

Depositions will resume on Saturday when Philip Reeker, acting assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, testifies. Additional witnesses will testify behind-close-doors next week. 

Democrats are investigating an allegation Trump linked U.S. military aid to public declarations by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that he would investigate Biden, his son Hunter Biden’s tenure on the board of a Ukrainian energy company called Burisma, and a debunked conspiracy theory that Ukraine, and not Russia, meddled in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. 

Trump has maintained he did nothing wrong, there was no quid pro quo, and the call was he had with Zelensky was ‘perfect.’ 

Bolton has been on the Democrats’ wish-list for a witness after he was revealed to be critical of efforts within the administration and from Trump’s allies to pressure the Ukraine into investigating Joe and Hunter Biden.  

He was so alarmed by the moves he alerted a lawyer, his former aide Fiona Hill testified last week in a congressional deposition behind closed doors.

Hill told lawmakers that Bolton said Giuliani, the president’s point-man on Ukraine, was ‘a hand grenade who’s going to blow everyone up,’ according to an account in The New York Times.  

President Trump has maintained he did nothing wrong

President Trump has maintained he did nothing wrong

Fiona Hill (center), a former White House expert on Russia, testified before Congress for more than 10 hours on Monday. She said she was asked by Bolton to alert White House lawyers about Ukraine

Fiona Hill (center), a former White House expert on Russia, testified before Congress for more than 10 hours on Monday. She said she was asked by Bolton to alert White House lawyers about Ukraine

Bolton was reported to be worried about Rudy Giuliani's activities

Bolton was reported to be worried about Rudy Giuliani’s activities

Following a ‘sharp exchange’ with U.S. ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland, who was working with Giuliani on the pressure campaign, Bolton instructed Hill to notify a National Security Council lawyer.

Referring to acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, Bolton told Hill to relay a message to the chief lawyer for the National Security Council: ‘I am not part of whatever drug deal Sondland and Mulvaney are cooking up.’ 

Sondland, a businessman who donated $1 million to Trump’s inaugural committee, is the U.S. ambassador to the European Union. He worked in tandem with Giuliani on the Ukraine portfolio. 

The Times reported that Bolton had a sharp exchange with Sondland on July 10 about White House efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate Democrats.

Hill’s testimony followed allegations that Trump pushed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky during a July 25 phone call to investigate the Bidens, sparking a scandal that has led to an impeachment inquiry by Democrats in the House of Representatives. 

Trump in September fired Bolton, who is known for his hardline stances on Washington’s archenemies, particularly Iran, North Korea and Venezuela.

Hill left the Trump administration shortly before the July call with Zelensky.

 

 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk