Oct 23, 2019 - Economy

Former acting AG Matt Whitaker: "Abuse of power is not a crime"

Former acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker on Tuesday told Fox News' Laura Ingraham that "abuse of power is not a crime," while arguing against the ongoing impeachment inquiry into President Trump.

What he's saying: Whitaker came to the president's defense after Bill Taylor, the top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine, told House investigators on Tuesday that Trump conditioned the release of military aid on the Ukrainian president's willingness to investigate natural gas company Burisma and alleged interference in the 2016 election.

"I'm a former prosecutor and what I know is this is a perfect time for a preliminary hearing, where you would say, 'Show us your evidence. What evidence of a crime do you have?' The Constitution ... abuse of power is not a crime. Let's fundamentally boil it down to ... the Constitution is very clear that this has to be some pretty egregious behavior, and they cannot tell the American people what this case is even about right now."
— Matthew Whitaker

Background: Whitaker, a former U.S. attorney, briefly led the Department of Justice from November 2018 through February 2019, before William Barr's nomination. He oversaw special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation amid questions surrounding the legality of his temporary appointment and fears that he would intervene in the probe.

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