Peter Navarro, who served as Donald Trump’s Director of Trade and Manufacturing Policy and is an economist, somehow ended up on Trump’s team working on the COVID-19 response plan. He tells the story of that time in his book, In Trump Time: A Journal of America’s Plague Year, which he describes as a “compelling, page-turner of a book that tells the story of America 2020 from inside the White House” and “the story of a President who worked night and day for the American people, who built the strongest economy in modern history, who would deliver a life-saving suite of vaccines to the American people literally at warp speed.”
Navarro discovered on Sunday that telling that story means it isn’t covered by executive privilege, no matter what the twice-impeached ex-president who lost the popular vote twice might say.
— The Hill (@thehill) December 12, 2021
Navarro’s attorneys announced in a letter on Sunday that their client did not intend to respond to a subpoena by the House Select Committee on the Coronavirus Crisis. Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC), who serves as chairman on that committee, was quick to respond to the refusal in a letter of his own.
‘Your letter states that you are “unable to respond to the Subpoena based on former President Trump’s invocation of executive privilege with respect to the very topic covered by the Subpoena,” which you describe as “a direct order” not tocomply with the subpoena.2 As explained below, your letter presents no valid basis for refusing to comply with the subpoena. Your refusal to comply is particularly indefensible given that you disclosed many details about your work in the White House, including details of conversations with the former President about the pandemic response, in your recent book and related press tour
Former White House trade adviser Peter Navarro refuses to comply with a House subpoena for documents in Covid-19 probe, citing a "direct order" from former President Trump to claim executive privilege, a letter from Navarro says. https://t.co/17ApA5bcbj
— NBC News (@NBCNews) December 12, 2021
Navarro’s attorneys noted specifically that their client did not intend to respond due to a direct order not to comply by the ex-president, which is yet another attempt by Trump to obstruct justice in an investigation against him, since that same “direct order” has been given to all of the Trump allies involved in the planning of the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol Building.
In a press release, Trump wrote that:
‘The Communist Democrats are engaging in yet another Witch Hunt, this time going after my Administration’s unprecedented and incredible coronavirus response, despite the fact that, sadly, more Americans have died this year fromCovid than in all of 2020. It is a Witch Hunt that’s been going on for years. Why don’t they investigate Crooked Hillary, when so much has now been proven about her and her campaign’s lies and dealings with Russia to smear me and spy on my campaign? I’m telling Peter Navarro to protect executive privilege and not let these unhinged Democrats discredit our great accomplishments. The Witch Hunts must end!
Navarro says he won't comply with subpoena in House Covid investigation https://t.co/rouX8fdV4v
— #TuckFrump (@realTuckFrumper) December 12, 2021
Navarro is accused of using the pandemic for economic gain, having made deals with companies in exchange for promises of money and loan approvals. In addition to several other companies, Navarro’s emails with Kodak are not, and will not be in any court, covered by executive privilege.
‘A report by a Special Committee of the Eastman Kodak Company’s (Kodak) Board of Directors indicates that you also participated in telephone conversations with Kodak’s leadership about the company partnering with the federal government in responding to the coronavirus crisis—after which Kodak was promised a $765 million federal loan.13 These and other third-party communications that may remain in your possession cannot reasonably be cloaked under the veil of privilege.’
— Milton K. Moore III (@MiltonKMooreIII) December 12, 2021