On Thursday, as Reuters reported, President Donald Trump said that he will not allow former White House Counsel Don McGahn to testify before Congress.
“I would say it’s done,” Trump said, suggesting that allowing McGahn to testify would create a precedent, and adding that McGahn had already talked to Special Counsel Robert Mueller “for 30 hours.”
Trump’s refusal to allow McGahn to testify perhaps comes as no surprise, given that the former White House Counsel has — since the release of Robert Mueller’s final report — become one of the central figures in the Russia probe. Mueller has cleared Trump and his campaign of conspiracy with Russia, but the special counsel has seemingly not cleared the president of obstruction of justice. The prosecutors refused to charge the president with the crime, without exonerating him.
House Democrats have moved on from collusion to obstruction, and Don McGahn has become the central figure in the case. As previously reported by The Inquisitr, the former White House counsel told the special counsel’s office that he had been asked by the president to fire Robert Mueller. McGhan refused to follow Trump’s orders, potentially saving the president from being prosecuted. House Democrats now want Don McGahn to testify, but Donald Trump does not.
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) May 3, 2019
According to Watergate prosecutor David Dorsen, the president has no legal authority to block McGahn from testifying. In an interview with CNN broadcast Friday, Dorsen shared his thoughts about the issue, stating that Trump has “an exaggerated view of his status and powers,” Raw Story reports.
The former Watergate prosecutor explained why Trump cannot block McGahn from testifying, stating that Congress could simply subpoena the former White House Counsel, effectively overriding the president’s order.
“President Trump says, ‘I won’t let him testify’ — it’s not for President Trump to decide whether he will let a witness testify, now a private citizen, before a house of Congress. They are equal branches of the government and they could subpoena him and have him testify without the permission of the president… I just think the president has an exaggerated view of his status and powers.”
Dorsen drew parallels between Watergate and Mueller’s Russia probe, stating that his colleagues working on the case against former President Richard Nixon “had total access to everything in Watergate.” Although Trump often claims that what the Democrats are seeking is “unprecedented,” that is simply not true, according to the former Watergate prosecutor.
Dorsen concluded that Don McGahn will not be able to resist a Congressional subpoena.
“He’s going to have to testify or go to jail,” the prosecutor said.