Trump Asserts Executive Privilege Over Mueller Report And Underlying Documents

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President Trump asserted executive privilege over the Mueller report and its underlying evidence on Wednesday in order to prevent Democratic lawmakers from obtaining an unredacted version, according to Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd in a letter to House Judiciary Committee chairman Jerrold Nadler. 

“We are disappointed that you have rejected the Department of Justice’s request to delay the vote of the Committee on the Judiciary on a contempt finding against the Attorney General this morning,” wrote Boyd. “Accordingly, this is to advise you that the President has asserted executive privilege over the entirety of the subpoenaed materials.”

The panel is voting on Wednesday to hold Attorney General William Barr in contempt of Congress over his refusal to provide the unredacted report, which Nadler has called a “constitution crisis.”

The assertion of executive privilege is Trump’s first use of secrecy powers as president, according to the New York Times, which follows a Tuesday evening letter from the Justice Department to Nadler notifying him that they would advise Trump to protect the report.  

“Such unreasonable demands, together with the Committee’s precipitous threat to hold the Attorney General in contempt, are a transparent attempt to short-circuit the constitutionally mandated accommodation process and provoke an unnecessary conflict between our respective branches of government,” reads the letter from Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd.

“If the Committee decides to proceed in spite of this request … the Attorney General will advise the President to make a protective assertion of executive privilege over the subpoenaed material,” the letter adds. 

In response to the letter, Nadler said “The White House waived these privileges long ago, and the Department seemed open to sharing these materials with us earlier today. The Department’s legal arguments are without credibility, merit, or legal or factual basis.”

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