This morning, Palmer Report brought you the story of how Kellyanne Conway’s Hatch Act scandal was finally starting to become a problem for her. Although Hatch Act violations don’t come with criminal punishment, the House Oversight Committee announced a hearing into Conway’s actions scheduled for this Wednesday.
Initially, it appeared that Kellyanne Conway was going to get to decide whether or not to attend the hearing. But then the House Oversight Committee made clear that she would be subpoenaed if she didn’t agree to show up. This meant that Kellyanne would either have to show up and humiliate herself, or she’d have to fight an ugly subpoena battle in court that would result in weeks or months of negative headlines for her – and then she’d have to testify anyway. Now that decision has been made.
The White House announced this evening that it’s invoking some kind of imaginary privilege and instructing Kellyanne Conway not to show up and testify. That means Wednesday’s hearing will make her look guilty for having refused to show up and defend herself. It’ll also mean that she’s the latest name to get pulled into the legal battle over testimony between House Democrats and the White House. That’ll mean a whole lot of controversial headlines about Kellyanne going forward.
As we’ve explained all along, Donald Trump is not going to fire Kellyanne Conway simply because she broke the law, or even because the U.S. Office of Special Counsel advised him to fire her. He’ll only fire Kellyanne if her scandal becomes the wrong kind of distraction for him, and he decides to selfishly throw her overboard in order to make the whole thing go away. After all, we’ve seen Trump do this to plenty of his other loyal underlings.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report