Trump Says Former Bolton Deputy Has ‘No Business’ in Court

(Bloomberg) -- President Donald Trump said his former deputy national security advisor has “no business” asking a federal judge whether he must comply with a congressional subpoena to testify at the impeachment hearings.

Trump asked the judge to throw out Charles Kupperman’s lawsuit seeking direction from the court. The president claims to have absolute power to decide whether his advisers can testify.

“Now that the president has made the decision to invoke the immunity and directed Dr. Kupperman accordingly, the proper course is to abide by that direction rather than ask this court what he is supposed to do,” Trump’s lawyers wrote. “Permitting such compulsion at the whim of congressional committees poses a grave threat to the president’s ability to keep his internal deliberations confidential.”

Kupperman said in a complaint last month that he faces “irreconcilable commands” -- a subpoena from House Democrats requiring him to cooperate and an order from the White House not to testify.

Kupperman was former National Security Advisor John Bolton’s deputy. Bolton was forced out of the job in September. He is in the same position as Kupperman, having been subpoenaed, and said he’d comply if he were ordered by a judge.

The case is Kupperman v. House of Representatives, 19-CV-03224, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia (Washington).

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

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