House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) lashed out Wednesday in response to a Justice Department (DOJ) memorandum affirming the constitutionality of President Donald Trump’s appointment of Acting U.S. Attorney General Matthew G. Whitaker.
In her statement, Pelosi called Whitaker “a partisan hack,” accused him of “shady business dealings” and “involvement in patent scams,” and declared that accusations alone would “preclude him from Senate confirmation”:
“The appointment of Matthew Whitaker as the nation’s chief legal officer does violence to the Constitution and the vision of our Founders. The Appointments Clause in the Constitution – which clearly trumps any statute the Administration’s lawyers have chosen to cite – is violated by the President’s brazen installation of a partisan hack whose reported history of shady business dealings, including involvement in patent scams and questions surrounding a taxpayer-financed loan, would preclude him from Senate confirmation.
“Bipartisan legal experts agree that this appointment is unconstitutional. The delays in this opinion’s release and the multiple reports of DOJ officials raising concerns about the appointment make clear that the President’s action is on extremely dubious legal ground. The President is clearly dodging the Senate confirmation process, installing a political lackey at the helm of the DOJ solely to obstruct the Mueller investigation.”
Pelosi says her accusations not only invalidate Whitaker’s appointment, but also warrant that Whitaker should be recused from “any involvement” in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s ever-widening, ongoing investigation of President Donald Trump:
“This unconstitutional appointment should be immediately rescinded, and Whitaker, who is obviously unfit for the position of Attorney General, should be recused from any involvement in the Mueller investigation because of his clear conflicts of interest.”