"The Committee's extremely broad request for documents -- now a subpoena -- is a significant intrusion on Executive Branch interests" - Ummmmm, we’re quite sure it is!
By Dell Hill
As expected, the Obama administration has elected not to comply with a subpoena from Congress with regard to the President’s possible involvement in the Solyndra scandal. And they did it in the usual “Friday night document dump” fashion.
“The White House on Friday all but refused to turn over the documents House Republicans have subpoenaed on bankrupt solar firm Solyndra, firing off a letter saying the request would put an "unreasonable burden on the president's ability to meet his constitutional duties."
The feisty response appears to set up a clash between congressional investigators and the White House over the sprawling probe into Solyndra's finances and the administration's involvement in the decision to provide the struggling company a $528 million loan with taxpayer money.
Related InteractiveLetter From White House on Solyndra Subpoena
The following is the letter sent Nov. 4 from the White House on Republicans' subpoena for Solyndra documents.
Solyndra Execs Reaped Bonuses Before Bankruptcy, Documents Show
White House Counsel Kathryn Ruemmler, in her letter, scolded GOP lawmakers for demanding more documents, noting the Obama administration has already turned over 85,000 pages of documents in the course of their investigation. Without explicitly refusing to comply with the subpoena, Ruemmler repeatedly described the order as "overbroad."
"The Committee's extremely broad request for documents -- now a subpoena -- is a significant intrusion on Executive Branch interests," she wrote, saying she can only conclude the subpoena was "driven more by partisan politics than a legitimate effort to conduct a responsible investigation."
Though the White House has turned over thousands of documents, Republicans say the administration has not provided everything they've requested. The House Energy and Commerce Committee voted Thursday to subpoena, and the subpoenas went out late Thursday to the White House and office of the vice president.
"Unfortunately, we had to take this step after the White House has continued to slow walk the production of documents necessary for this investigation by only releasing selected documents and records," Rep. Cliff Stearns, R-Fla., chairman of the House panel investigating the matter, said in a statement.
The subpoena called on the White House to produce "all documents referring or relating in any way" to the Solyndra loan guarantee, as well as to investors in the company and to the company's financial condition.”