Politics & Government

Chief of Staff Mulvaney likely won’t testify in House impeachment inquiry, White House officials say

President Donald Trump’s chief of staff and former S.C. congressman Mick Mulvaney won’t testify in the U.S. House impeachment inquiry, White House officials say.

White House counselor Kellyanne Conway told reporters Wednesday that she was told Mulvaney would not appear before the House committees, despite House investigators asking Mulvaney to give a deposition on Friday, multiple news outlets have reported.

According to news reports, Hogan Gidley, White House spokesman, also said in a statement, “Past Democrat and Republican administrations would not be inclined to permit senior advisers to the president to participate in such a ridiculous, partisan, illegitimate proceeding — and neither is this one.”

The committees requested Tuesday that Mulvaney speak as part of their investigation into allegations that Trump asked Ukrainian officials to reopen an investigation into the son of one of his chief political opponents, former Vice President Joe Biden, who is seeking the Democratic nomination for president.

Mulvaney, an Indian Land Republican who represented South Carolina in the state legislature and in Congress, has remained in the impeachment inquiry spotlight since mid-October, when the chief of staff held a press conference in which he admitted Trump withheld foreign aid from the Ukraine as a bargaining chip to request reopening the investigation.

“Get over it,” Mulvaney told reporters. “There’s going to be political influence in foreign policy.”

Later, Mulvaney hit the TV circuits, trying to walk back his comments.

Mulvaney isn’t the only White House official to defy House requests to testify. Several current and former officials — including national security lawyers John Eisenberg and Michael Ellis, national security aide Robert Blair and budget official Brian McCormack — have refused to appear.

Emily Bohatch helps cover South Carolina’s government for The State. She also updates The State’s databases. Her accomplishments include winning a Green Eyeshade award in Disaster Reporting in 2018 for her teamwork reporting on Hurricane Irma. She has a degree in Journalism with a minor in Spanish from Ohio University’s E. W. Scripps School of Journalism.