If you are like me you probably feel that nothing the Democrats pull surprises you anymore, but that is just the words President Trump used when he heard about the subpoena for his son Donald Trump Jr. to testify regarding the Mueller investigation. Maybe the “surprise” was in that the subpoenas was NOT issued by the Democratic led House Judiciary Committee, but from the REPUBLICAN led, Senate Intelligence Committee!
The fact that the subpoena came from members of his own party however, did not stop the president from hitting back. In the Oval Office, Trump was asked about the subpoena issued to Trump Jr. on Wednesday evening as part of the committee’s Russia investigation. Trump replied, “I was very surprised. I saw [Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard] Burr saying there was no collusion two or three weeks ago,” Trump said. “I was very surprised to see my son—my son is a good person, he works hard. The last thing he needs is Washington, D.C. He’d rather not be involved.”
“My son is a good person. He testified for hours and hours. My son was totally exonerated by Mueller who doesn’t like, me,” Trump continued. “And for my son, after being exonerated to now get a subpoena to speak again after telling everyone about a nothing meeting, I’m pretty surprised.”
He added, “I’m just very surprised. I really am.”
The president was asked whether he would block his son from complying with the subpoena, after last month vowing to fight “all” subpoenas issued to administration officials and individuals close to him.
“We’ll see what happens,” Trump replied.
The committee, led by Republican Chairman Richard Burr, R-N.C., and Ranking Member Mark Warner, D-Va., has been investigating Russian interference for the last two years. Burr and Warner issued the subpoena over remarks Trump Jr. made while testifying before the panel in 2017.
One source close to the president’s son told Fox News that he has been trying to accommodate the committee’s request for more information, but the committee has been making unreasonable demands.
Another Call for a “Redo?”
Fox News was told the committee sought an extensive appearance covering many topics, which one source described as a “complete redo.” Sources close to Trump Jr. called the subpoena a political stunt.
The committee’s demand to have Trump Jr. testify again reportedly is related to former Trump attorney Michael Cohen’s testimony earlier this year. Cohen, who reported to prison this week to begin a three-year sentence, told a House committee that he had briefed Trump Jr. approximately 10 times about a plan to build a Trump Tower in Moscow.
But in 2017, Trump Jr. told the Senate Intelligence Committee he was only “peripherally aware” of the proposal.
Trump Jr. has testified before congressional committees multiple times as part of their Russia investigations. Trump Jr. first fell under scrutiny in the early summer of 2017, after it was revealed that he helped to organize, and then attend, a meeting with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya in Trump Tower in New York City. The meeting was initially billed as one where Trump Jr. and members of the Trump campaign could obtain “dirt” on Hillary Clinton for their benefit in the 2016 election. The meeting apparently did not reveal any dirt on Clinton, but Trump Jr., Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner, and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort attended the June 2016 meeting. Special Counsel Robert Mueller also investigated the meeting.
The move to subpoena Trump Jr. was met with disapproval from House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., who argued that politicians should redirect their energy away from investigating potential Russian collusion. “Donald J. Trump, Jr has already spent dozens of hours testifying in front of Congressional committees,” McCarthy tweeted. “Endless investigations—by either party—won’t change the fact that there was NO collusion. It’s time to move on. It’s time to focus on ISSUES, not investigations.”