Sat, 07 Dec 2019

Washington D.C. [USA], Nov 13 (ANI): Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney on Tuesday (local time) dropped his plans to file a lawsuit asking a federal court to decide whether he is required to testify before the Congress as part of the impeachment probe against President Donald Trump that is due to kick start this week.

Instead, his attorneys told a federal judge Tuesday morning he's planning to obey the White House and Justice Department's direction to refuse to cooperate with the House of Representatives, CNN reported.

The decision highlights how Mulvaney's standing among Trump administration officials had been floundering, and how he could become one of the most significant targets of Democrats in the coming weeks after two witnesses told Congress they believe that he was a key broker in Trump's political request to investigate former US Vice-President Joe Biden from his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky.

Mulvaney had attempted to ask the court for help as a way to hold off being held in contempt, according to his legal arguments over the past four days.

He had claimed that he could not choose between complying with the House subpoena he received and the White House's instruction that he is immune from testifying.

If he had sued, Mulvaney would have sued the House and asked the judge to decide if the subpoena was valid.

"After further consideration, Mr. Mulvaney does not intend to pursue litigation regarding the deposition subpoena issued to him by the U.S. House of Representatives. Rather, he will rely on the direction of the President, as supported by an opinion of the Office of Legal Counsel of the U.S. Department of Justice, in not appearing for the relevant deposition," his attorneys wrote in a filing Tuesday morning.

"In light of the above representation, Mr. Mulvaney respectfully suggests that there no longer is a need for the status conference set by this Court for this afternoon, and thus that the Court may wish to vacate that conference. Mr. Mulvaney appreciates the time of the Court in considering his motion to intervene, and the opportunity to be heard on that motion."Trump has pushed an unproven accusation that then-Vice President Biden improperly tried to help his son by pressuring the Ukrainian government to fire the country's prosecutor general. Hunter Biden served on the board of the Ukrainian natural gas company at the time.

There is no evidence of wrongdoing by either Joe or Hunter Biden in Ukraine. (ANI)

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