Former National Security Advisor John Bolton may defy Donald Trump's orders not to testify before the House of Representatives' impeachment inquiry, depending on how a court rules, say anonymous sources familiar with the situation.
As The Washington Post reports, Bolton is one of many individuals currently or previously tied to the Trump administration who have been ordered not to testify before the impeachment inquiry, which the administration believes is illegitimate and calls a "witch hunt. Many such individuals have followed Trump's orders and declined to testify, raising the ire of House Democrats. Indeed, according to a companion Washington Post report, Bolton was due to testify before the House today, but didn't show up.
Bolton may yet speak up, however, says an anonymous source. That is, if a court decision rules that he can.
As previously reported by The Inquisitr, at least one other person who has been asked to testify before the House and ordered not to by the Trump administration, has put the matter before a court, rather than decide for himself.
Charles Kupperman says, through his attorney, that he's effectively been caught between two branches of the government — the executive and the legislative. And he believes that it's not his decision to make as to which branch should have the upper hand when it comes to his testimony. Instead, he's asked a Washington court to decide, and he intends to abide by the court's decision.
Unfortunately for House Democrats, who are keen to get the impeachment inquiry wrapped up and Articles of Impeachment before the House floor as quickly as possible, the judge in the case does not appear in any hurry to make a ruling. In fact, he's given both sides of the case until December 10 to come up with arguments to present to him. It's unclear when he will rule after hearing the arguments.
Even so, his decision may be appealed by the Trump administration, and the case could potentially go all the way to the Supreme Court, dragging out the impeachment inquiry for months.
When, or even if, Bolton does testify, he's likely to be asked about his interactions with William Taylor, the acting ambassador to Ukraine, at the time of Trump's phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymy Zelensky. Bolton was reportedly "sympathetic" to Taylor's concerns about the phone call, and Bolton reportedly urged Taylor to bring the matter to the attention of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.