Sanders on Trump inaugural committee subpoena: ‘This has nothing to do with the White House’ – POLITICO

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Sanders on Trump inaugural committee subpoena: ‘This has nothing to do with the White House’ – POLITICO




Sarah Huckabee Sanders

Press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders deferred specific questions to the president’s inaugural committee, which is a separate entity from the White House. | Evan Vucci/AP photo

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders sought Tuesday to distance the White House from allegations of misusing money from President Donald Trump’s inaugural committee, though she did not deny that any illegal activity might have taken place.

Trump’s inaugural committee, which is just one more extension of the Trump universe under scrutiny from federal prosecutors, was hit with a subpoena on Monday for documents reportedly related to the nonprofit’s donors and whether they received any benefits for their contributions. Prosecutors also sought information about attendees at Trump’s 2017 swearing-in and whether any donations were made on behalf of foreign nationals.

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Asked on CNN’s “New Day” if she were confident no illegal activity took place on the committee, Sanders said, “I’m reading the same reports you are this morning, gathering the information.”

She deferred specific questions to the president’s inaugural committee, which is a separate entity from the White House. But she said that “what I do know at this point is this has nothing to do with the White House.”

Sanders has deflected blame when members of the president’s inner circle, most recently his longtime political adviser Roger Stone, have been wrapped by investigations. .

Those investigations have yielded guilty pleas or convictions of some of the president’s closest confidants, including Stone, Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen and his 2016 campaign chairman Paul Manafort. But the White House has maintained that the charges against Trump’s associates have nothing to do with the president despite the connection to activities that took place during or after his campaign.

Sanders on Tuesday dismissed the notion that the president was a common factor in the legal woes afflicting his inner circle, arguing instead that “the common thread is a hysteria over the fact that this president became president.”

“The common thread is that there is so much hatred out there that they will look for anything to try to create and tie problems to this president,” she said, adding that Trump has urged cooperation with the investigation and that the White House itself has cooperated.

She also said the Russia investigation was a distraction propped up by “the media and Democrats who dislike this president,” though it was Trump who appointed the U.S. attorney leading the Southern District of New York that issued the subpoena.

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