ShareThis Page
Trump won’t make immigration adviser Stephen Miller available to Congress | TribLIVE.com
Politics/Election

Trump won’t make immigration adviser Stephen Miller available to Congress

Associated Press
1075408_web1_1075408-9b43fffafb0441949b739d5dd1ce9042
AP
White House senior adviser Stephen Miller listens as President Trump speaks during a cabinet meeting at the White House in Washington. The White House has declined to make Miller available for testimony before Congressional committees on a major staff shakeup at Homeland Security.

WASHINGTON — The White House blocked adviser Stephen Miller from testifying before congressional committees on immigration and a staff shakeup at the Department of Homeland Security, prompting lawmakers on Thursday to demand internal communications on the topic from Homeland Security officials.

In a letter dated Wednesday, the White House counsel said Miller and other members of President Trump’s executive staff could refuse the request.

“The precedent for members of the White House staff to decline invitations to testify before congressional committees has been consistently adhered to by administrations of both political parties,” counsel Pat Cipollone wrote in his letter to House Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings, D-Md. Trump has said he is opposed to aides testifying.

Miller is Trump’s top immigration policy adviser, and several people familiar with the matter say he orchestrated the effort to replace top leaders at Homeland Security when Trump’s frustrations boiled over again recently on border security. The people were not allowed to speak publicly and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

The shakeup started with the withdrawal of Ron Vitiello to lead U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen then resigned, and so did Undersecretary for Management Claire Grady. Some, like U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services head Lee Francis Cissna, were rumored to be on the chopping block but have not yet left.

The Democratic heads of the House Judiciary, Oversight and Homeland Security Committees sent a letter to Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan on Thursday saying they were investigating the shakeup and asked for all internal communications related to the departure of several top officials.

“We are deeply concerned that the firing and forced resignation of these officials puts the security of the American people at risk,” the lawmakers wrote.

The decision not to allow Miller to testify comes as Trump contests Democrats’ efforts to ramp up investigations following the release of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

“We’re fighting all the subpoenas,” Trump declared on Wednesday.

Categories: News | Politics Election
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.