White House Communications Director Hope Hicks will most likely meet with the House Intelligence Committee behind closed doors on Tuesday, sources with knowledge of the matter said. It is, however, unclear how forthcoming Hicks will be if she appears for the closed-door interview.
Hicks was initially scheduled to appear before the committee last month, but the interview was postponed due to questions as to whether she could discuss the presidential transition and her time at the White House. The top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee Adam Schiff said on Monday that he was unsure if Hicks will answer their questions.
“We don’t know at this point if she will testify completely or fully as others who have served in the administration have, or whether she will do what Steve Bannon did, which was stonewall,” Schiff said. “We hope obviously she will be cooperative, but at this point, I don’t know what we can expect.”
Schiff’s remarks refer to former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, who said during his interview earlier this month that the White House had instructed him to invoke executive privilege on behalf of President Donald Trump, refusing to answer any questions beyond the time frame of the 2016 presidential campaign, CNN informs.
Schiff has called on the House panel to issue contempt citations to Bannon and former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, who also limited the scope of questions he would answer, although the Republican leading the committee’s Russia investigation, Mike Conaway, has not confirmed yet that that step would be taken.
According to a source, Hicks has already been interviewed by the Senate Intelligence Committee and she also met last year with special counsel Robert Mueller as part of his Russia probe.
During Trump’s campaign, Hicks was one of his closest aides who was in frequent communication with other senior officials. The House panel plans to interview her about any knowledge she has of contacts that occurred between other Trump associates and Russians, as she seems to have firsthand knowledge of a number of issues.