Political pundits on both sides of the aisle have been critical of Trump’s appointment of Matthew Whitaker as his acting Attorney General, since Jeff Sessions was apparently forced to resign last week. Whitaker seems to have many conflicts of interest in regards to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian election interference.
With the Democrats reclaiming the House of Representatives last week, and set to take their seats in January, they are already planning ways to rebut many of the President’s policies, as well as investigate dozens of targets related to the current administration.
While it appears as though Whitaker has no plans to recuse himself from Russia-related matters, Democrats are already providing some tells as to what they will do in order to ensure that the Mueller probe is not interfered with.
In speaking to NBC’s Meet the Press, Congressman Adam Schiff of California issued some rather scathing comments on the matter.
“It seems to me that the facts for recusal are very strong here,” Schiff explained. “This is someone who made repeated and prejudicial comments against the [Mueller] investigation — someone who has made false statements about it, claiming that the Russians really had no impact on our election. [Whitaker] is someone who has an important relationship with one of the important witnesses in the investigation.”
Not only has Whitaker made disparaging comments about the Mueller investigation, but he was also considered by the Trump legal team as someone they could hire to legally attack the Mueller probe. Schiff made it known that if Whitaker tries to have anything to do with the probe, he will ensure that his actions are exposed.
“I want to make this very clear,” Schiff told Chuck Todd of Meet the Press. “If [Whitaker] doesn’t recuse himself, if he has any involvement whatsoever in this Russia probe, we are going to find out whether he made commitments to the president about the probe, whether he is serving as a backchannel to the president or his lawyers about the probe, whether he’s doing anything to interfere with the probe. Mr. Whitaker needs to understand that he will be called to answer and that any role that he plays will be exposed to the public.”
In order to “expose” Whitaker, House Democrats could use their subpoena power to force those around him to testify under penalty of perjury. In doing so, they could gather a lot of information that could then be passed on to the public.
If Whitaker doesn't recuse himself and has any involvement in Mueller's probe, we will expose it, including whether he made any commitments to Trump, is serving as a back channel, or interfering in the probe.
He will be held accountable. There must be no ambiguity about that. pic.twitter.com/ZpNmOynWLi
— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) November 11, 2018