Statement of Karen Hobert Flynn, President of Common Cause
The President’s refusal to comply with congressional demands for witness testimony and documents in its impeachment investigation is a direct defiance of the United States Constitution. This blatant obstruction of an impeachment investigation will likely be included in future articles of impeachment leveled against Donald Trump. It is the type of abuse that is so clear cut that the Department of Justice should investigate, if Attorney General Barr wasn’t complicit in the obstruction of justice himself. Congress must act to curb this abuse of power expediently before permanent damage is done to our nation’s system of government.
Ironically, yesterday the President awarded the Medal of Freedom to former Attorney General Edwin Meese who famously covered-up the Iran-Contra affair for then-president Reagan until the pressure from Congress grew to be so loud Reagan had to agree to let Meese, a long-time personal friend, step down. Attorney General Barr was on-hand for the ceremony.
It seemed like a thinly veiled attempt by the president to normalize the politicization of the Department of Justice reaching back to the last Attorney General who acted more in the interest of the president he served than the people and the nation he swore and oath to protect.
Republicans in Congress must join their Democratic colleagues and move to stop this blatant and unprecedented defiance of the Constitution. History will not look kindly on those Members of Congress who continue to place their allegiance to their party before their allegiance to their country. Those members of congress will find themselves on the wrong side of history if they do not uphold their oaths of office and defend the Constitution.
Common Cause members in all 50 states will continue to pressure their representatives in Congress to check this unconstitutional defiance and uphold the oath they swore to defend the Constitution.