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Don McGahn’s Former Chief of Staff Agrees to Testify Before House Judiciary Committee


The Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee on Monday announced that the panel had reached an agreement with Don McGahn’s former chief of staff. Chairman Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) said that Annie Donaldson agreed to appear for in-person testimony sometime after Nov. 1 pertaining to key events that she observed during her time working for McGahn. She also agreed to provide a series of answers to written questions.

Donaldson’s written notes provided former special counsel Robert Mueller with key evidence in his investigation, the Washington Post noted.

“Ms. Donaldson had a front row seat to many of the instances outlined in the Mueller Report dealing with President Trump’s alleged obstruction of justice and other abuses of power, which is why she is a key witness for the committee in our ongoing work to hold the president, his associates, and members of his administration accountable,” Nadler said. “We look forward to hearing from Ms. Donaldson and reviewing her written testimony.”

The panel had originally subpoenaed Donaldson to appear on Monday, but granted a delay as she no longer lives in Washington and is limited in her ability to travel because she is currently in her third trimester of pregnancy.

“We understand that Ms. Donaldson’s pregnancy makes it difficult for her to travel and testify for long periods of time, and we worked on finding an accommodation to those needs and restrictions,” Nadler said. “We are happy to reach an agreement with Ms. Donaldson that secures her prompt response to the Committee’s questions while reserving the right of the Committee to call her in when she is again able to travel and testify.”

Under the agreement, Donaldson must provide her written answers within one week of receiving them from the panel and inform the committee if the White House gives her or her counsel any documents.

According to Nadler, the White House must treat Donaldson’s written responses as though she had appeared to testify in-person, meaning they must “make any objections on a question-by-question basis.”

The White House previously moved to block Donaldson’s former boss, Don McGahn, from testifying about his time serving President Donald Trump. The committee has already begun the process of taking McGahn to civil court in an attempt to get him to comply with a congressional subpoena, arguing that the White House’s assertion of executive privilege over his testimony does not stand up to legal scrutiny.

[image via Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images]

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Jerry Lambe is a journalist at Law&Crime. He is a graduate of Georgetown University and New York Law School and previously worked in financial securities compliance and Civil Rights employment law.