Trump uses executive privilege over the Mueller report


Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

The release of the full Mueller report has caused a controversy between House Democrats and President Trump that may end in an extended legal battle.

Landon DeBoer, Sports Editor

Yesterday, President Trump used his executive privilege to block the House Judiciary Committee from obtaining the full, unredacted report on Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential election by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

In response to President Trump’s use of the principle of executive privilege (which allows the President to withhold information in the public interest), the House Judiciary Committee voted later in the day yesterday to hold Attorney General William Barr in contempt of Congress for not showing up to his hearing and for not complying with demands to grant access to the full Mueller Report. Barr could potentially face jail time for being found in contempt of Congress.

These actions taken by both President Trump and the House Judiciary Committee have furthered the dispute between the two. The Judiciary Committee has had previous conflicts with the President, such as the Judiciary Committee requesting his tax returns and him not complying. Alongside not being able to obtain Trump’s tax returns, the Judiciary Committee has subpoenaed members of the Trump White House to testify and they have also not complied with the committee’s wishes.

Committee chairman Jerrold Nadler has been vocal in his displeasure toward neglecting the wishes of the Judiciary Committee and limiting Congress’ power to check the President.

“[The use of executive privilege] is an attack on the ability of the American people to know what the Executive Branch is doing,” said Nadler, according to AP. “This cannot be.”

However, on the other hand, the Trump team has tried to put aside the dispute by calling the Judiciary Committee’s attempt to gain information a political ploy.

“[The White House] will not comply with Chairman Nadler’s unlawful and reckless demands,” said White House press secretary Sarah Sanders, according to AP.

Both sides are seemingly preparing to enter a full-blown legal battle that will continue for a while. As for the release of the full Mueller report to Congress and the American people, that probably will not happen any time soon. Time will tell what comes of the Mueller report and if Trump’s use of executive privilege will stop Congress from viewing it.