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Executive Privilege

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House Judiciary Committee Holding Barr in Contempt

Executive Privilege
Seal of the United States Department of Justice

Department of Justice Statement

“The accommodation process between co-equal branches of government is supposed to be a two-way street. Unfortunately, the only side who has made accommodations is the attorney general, who made extraordinary efforts to provide Congress and the public with information about the special counsel’s work. The attorney general could not comply with the House Judiciary Committee’s subpoena without violating the law, court rules, and court orders, and without threatening the independence of the Department’s prosecutorial functions. Despite this, the Department of Justice engaged with the committee in good faith in an effort to accommodate its stated interest in these materials. Unfortunately, rather than allowing negotiations to continue, chairman Nadler short-circuited these efforts by proceeding with a politically motivated and unnecessary contempt vote, which he refused to postpone to allow additional time to explore discussion and compromise. It is deeply disappointing that elected representatives of the American people have chosen to engage in such inappropriate political theatrics. Regrettably, chairman Nadler’s actions have prematurely terminated the the accommodation process and forced the President to assert executive privilege to preserve the status quo. No one, including chairman Nadler and his committee, will force the Department of Justice to break the law.”

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