In two paragraphs sent to House investigators Tuesday, President Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani rebuffed a Congressional subpoena to testify in impeachment investigations and provide documents to three committees. “Please accept this response as formal notice that Mr. Giuliani will not participate because this appears to be an unconstitutional, baseless, and illegitimate ‘impeachment inquiry,'” Giuliani’s attorney Jon Sale wrote on Oct. 15 in response to demands from the House Intelligence Committee, House Committee on Oversight and Reform, and the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
Sale, a former Watergate prosecutor and a former prosecutor in the Southern District of New York, echoed the White House legal view that the Congressional investigation isn’t legitimate without a full vote of the House. The subpoena sent by House Democrats on Sept. 30 was “overbroad, unduly burdensome, and seeks documents beyond the scope of a legitimate inquiry,” Sale wrote, adding that the documents requests are protected by “attorney-client, attorney work-product, and executive privileges.” In addition, Giuliani adopted the positions and legal analysis that went into the letter from White House Counsel Pat Cipollone on behalf of Donald Trump refusing to cooperate with Congress, Sale wrote.
An official working on the impeachment inquiry said that Giuliani’s failure to comply will be used as evidence of obstruction. “If Rudy and the President truly have nothing to hide about their actions, Giuliani will comply,” the official said.
Now that he’s helped Giuliani respond to the Congressional subpoena, Sale says he isn’t representing Giuliani anymore. “The task I agreed to undertake is completed, so that ends my representation,” Sale says. Sale said there hasn’t been a falling out between him and Giuliani. “There is absolutely no split between us,” Sale says.
Asked if the letter amounted to the legal version of a middle finger, Giuliani cryptically replied with a one word text message: “Great”.