House investigators involved in the impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump have requested that former national security adviser John Bolton be present to give a deposition next week.
If he accepts the invitation, Bolton would be slated to speak before investigators on Thursday, November 7.
In addition to him being invited, the inquiry’s investigators have also requested two lawyers for the national security council, John Eisenberg and Michael Ellis, also appear before them, on Monday, November 4, according to a source who spoke to Politico on the matter.
It’s unclear at this time if Bolton will agree to appear before the impeachment inquiry panel without being compelled to do so with a congressional subpoena. It’s also unclear if the White House will try to invoke executive privilege to prevent him from doing so.
CNN reported that asking Bolton to appear is a sign that the investigation is set to shift soon, from one in which depositions are being given in private, to one where public hearings will soon come about.
House Foreign Affairs chair Rep. Eliot Engel said Bolton wasn’t subpoenaed to appear, but that if he refused to show up voluntarily next week, it would be “something that we would consider.”
House committees seek testimony from former national security adviser John Bolton in impeachment inquiry https://t.co/kE6CZYC2xT
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) October 30, 2019
Several witnesses have so far expressed that Bolton had severe misgivings about the strategy of developing diplomacy with Ukraine. Dr. Fiona Hill, a former adviser to Bolton when he was national security adviser, said that Bolton once described Giuliani as “a hand grenade who’s going to blow everybody up,” per prior reporting from HillReporter.com.
Others who were set to testify had similar portraits to paint of Bolton’s feelings toward Giuliani. Christopher Anderson, an assistant to special envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker, was set to speak before the panel of investigators on Wednesday, MarketWatch reported.
According to a copy of Anderson’s opening statement, he was set to say that Bolton had told him that Giuliani was “a key voice” speaking to the president directly with regards to forming policy on Ukraine, which complicated diplomacy goals with the country overall.
The impeachment inquiry began after a whistleblower complaint surfaced, alleging that Trump had put pressure on Ukraine’s president to open an investigation into Joe Biden and his son, Hunter, as well as investigate a debunked conspiracy theory about a Democratic Party server being somewhere in the Eastern European nation. Some have also alleged that the Trump administration held up military aid to Ukraine in order to establish a quid pro quo to get that nation to agree to the investigation demands.
Bolton left the Trump administration this past summer, under not-so-amicable terms. Indeed, there was confusion on social media, between Trump and Bolton, on whether the former national security adviser resigned or was fired, USA Today reported.