Whitaker Signals He’s Prepared To Cite Executive Privilege In Closely Watched Hearing

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 21: Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker delivers remarks to the Joint Terrorism Task Force on November 21, 2018 in New York City. Whitaker was appointed Acting Attorney General by U.S. Pr... NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 21: Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker delivers remarks to the Joint Terrorism Task Force on November 21, 2018 in New York City. Whitaker was appointed Acting Attorney General by U.S. President Donald Trump after Attorney General Jeff Sessions was forced to resign. (Photo by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images) MORE LESS

In his prepared remarks in front of the House Judiciary Committee Friday, acting Attorney General Matt Whitaker signaled that he planned to avoid lawmakers’ question about his conversations with President Trump on the grounds that the President may seek to invoke executive privilege on those topics at a later date.

“I want to assure you that I will seek to answer the Committee’s questions today, as best as I can, but I also must make clear that I will continue the longstanding Executive Branch policy and practice of not disclosing information that may be subject to executive privilege, such as the contents of deliberations or conversations with the President,” Whitaker will say, according to the prepared remarks.

They come after a tense showdown between Whitaker and the committee over whether the committee would subpoena him at the hearing for declining to answer certain questions about his White House contacts. Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY) said Thursday that any situations where Whitaker would refuse to answer the committee’s questions on a ‘”case-by-case” basis.

Read Whitaker’s prepared remarks below:

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

Sincerely,
TPM Staff
Latest Muckraker
Comments
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Reporters:
Newswriters:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: