President Donald Trump asserted executive privilege on the unredacted version of the Mueller report on Wednesday morning.
The president’s decision was detailed in a statement to reporters from White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders.
“Neither the White House nor Attorney General Barr will comply with Chairman Nadler’s unlawful and reckless demands,” Sanders wrote, after Barr issued a statement recommending that Trump claim executive privilege.
The White House said that Democrats and Nadler were trying to “redo” the Mueller investigation to distract the country from the booming economy.
“Faced with Chairman Nadler’s blatant abuse of power, and at the Attorney General’s request, the President has no other option than to make a protective assertion of executive privilege,” the statement read.
The White House urged Democrats to move beyond the investigation and focus on more pertinent issues to the American people like the border crisis, prescription drug prices, and infrastructure.
“It is sad that Chairman Nadler is only interested in pandering to the press and pleasing his radical left constituency,” Sanders wrote.
Earlier Wednesday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that Barr should be held in contempt of Congress for his refusal to testify to the committee and accused him of lying to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
.@SpeakerPelosi says she thinks Attorney General William Barr should be held in contempt. https://t.co/hAuZk6usS4 #PostLive pic.twitter.com/GfE3m3tpx7
— Washington Post Live (@postlive) May 8, 2019
Later Wednesday, Sanders spoke with reporters at the White House pointing out that there was already a less-redacted version of the Mueller report available to Congress that Democrats were ignoring.
“Not a single Democrat has even taken the time to go and look at it,” she said. “They’re asking for information that they know they can’t have.”
She said that Barr was legally prevented from giving Congress the unredacted version of the Mueller report, which would reveal the grand jury information.
“Chairman Nadler is asking the attorney general of the United States to break the law and commit a crime by releasing information that he knows he has no legal authority to have,” Sanders said. “It’s truly outrageous and absurd what the chairman is doing and he should be embarrassed by his behavior.”
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