The White House refused Tuesday to turn over internal documents regarding Ukraine being sought by House Democrats as the Trump administration dug in against their impeachment inquiry.
In a defiant letter that echoed the president's recent impeachment messaging — accusing Democrats of violating the Constitution and civil liberties and attempting to overturn the results of the 2016 election — the White House said it would not comply with the request from House Democrats because they were conducting an invalid investigation.
"Never before in our history has the House of Representatives — under the control of either political party — taken the American people down the dangerous path you seem determined to pursue," White House counsel Pat Cipollone wrote.
The move was the latest demonstration of a White House strategy of almost-universal resistance taking shape in its efforts to stymie the Democratic investigation into whether President Donald Trump used the power of his office to pressure Ukraine to investigate 2020 rival Joe Biden.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, who has been spearheading much of the inquiry, blasted the administration later Tuesday.
"The White House says there is nothing wrong with pressuring a foreign government to intervene in a US election," he wrote in a tweet. "They say: they will not cooperate with an impeachment inquiry unless it’s on their terms. They mean: the President is above the law. The Constitution says otherwise."
When one political party in this country won’t respect precedent or the law, then you don’t have a republic anymore. You don’t have democracy, you don’t have a legal system, and the rule of law is whatever someone in power says it is.
I applaud the Democrats because they are trying to hold up the shattered remnants of our democracy and continue moving forward. The Republicans have abandoned their responsibilities under the Constitution and are pretending that they never said all the things they have said and done. You could put all of them on a permanent loop, and go back to the Clinton era and the Obama era, and play their public pronouncements over and over again and it wouldn’t matter.
They are happy to see the whole goddamned country burned to the ground in order to keep a madman from tweeting something mean about them.