Trump Adviser Peter Navarro Served With Subpoena From Congress


The House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic has decided to exercise its subpoena muscle as it continues to look into how the former president handled or mishandled the pandemic. When Donald Trump’s go-to adviser for the COVID-19 virus Peter Navarro failed to provide the documents and testimony the subcommittee requested, Chair Representative James Clyburn (D-SC) sent him a subpoena.

Representative Clyburn released a memo about Navarro’s “unwillingness to voluntarily cooperate,” according to The Hill:

‘Mr. Navarro has demonstrated his unwillingness to voluntarily cooperate with the Select Subcommittee’s investigation. Given his central role in the pandemic response, the importance of the Select Subcommittee’s investigation, and his continued refusal to cooperate voluntarily, this subpoena is necessary.’

Chair Clyburn also wanted:

‘[D]etails on Navarro’s compliance with federal records law and Trump officials’ use of personal email accounts [and] “extensive communication” between himself and other White House officials that were sent through a private, encrypted email service.’

Thus far, the subcommittee had acquired 80 messages Navarro sent to other members of the White House relating to the “government’s coronavirus strategy [and] Representative Clyburn suspects there are more.”

This was the second one the Select Subcommittee subpoena released, according to The Politico. What its members were seeking this time in addition to the documents was testimony regarding whether Trump’s people misdirected “its own health agencies’ work and how it attempted to change its messaging to downplay the threats posed by the virus.”

This September, it sent the first subpoena to one of Navarro’s advisers, virologist Steven Hatfill. Now, the former top aide has until December 8 to provide the requested documentation, and this time he must “appear for a deposition by Dec. 15.”

Navarro’s response has been to call the investigation a “witch hunt.” He released a statement reading:

‘I will be delivering a case of my new book ‘In Trump Time’ to members of the committee which explains why this is indeed a witch hunt.’

Navarro was originally the director of the Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy. However, Trump decided to move him into his top pandemic advisory position as the pandemic evolved. In this, he reported on supply shortages and how to keep the economy on an even kilt during the country lockdowns.

The subcommittee wanted to determine how Trump’s people responded:

‘[To] early warnings about the virus, its potential economic consequences and how it went about securing goods such as masks, gowns and ventilators.’

The subcommittee learned that Navarro kept a daily journal, and they were keen to see it and his encrypted private email account for the year beginning in February 2020 and ending in January 2021.

In emails released by the committee in September, Hatfill pushed for “frank honesty” and “warned Navarro about how little scientists understood about COVID-19:”

‘In truth we do not have a clue how many are infected in the USA. We are expecting the first wave to spread in the U.S. within the next 7 days.’

Chairman Clyburn said:

‘[Navarro] pursued a haphazard and ineffective approach to procurement.’

Indeed, Navarro gave out contracts to businesses linked to the White House, skipping the open-bidding procurement process. The aide even awarded contracts to American companies even without the capability of manufacturing protective equipment.

He was also the one pushing the drug hydroxychloroquine as “a potential cure for Covid-19 despite a lack of scientific evidence” in August 2020. In fact, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had warned against it.

Worse, Navarro publicly argued with the internationally-recognized virologist and a prime leader of the COVID-29 Task Force on national TV. The aide even accused Dr. Fauci of being responsible for the pandemic, due to the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) link to a Wuhan, China lab.

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