A lawsuit filed by former security official Charles Kupperman to challenge a House subpoena for him to be the witness in the impeachment inquiry was dismissed by a federal judge on Monday following the withdrawal of the subpoena, CNN reports.
Judge Richard Leon wrote in a 14-page opinion that there is no expectation that the House will reissue the subpoena; therefore the lawsuit is unnecessary.
Notably, by ruling the case as moot, Leon was able to sidestep the thorny issue of separation of powers and whether the White House could claim some administration witnesses have immunity.
Leon, however, noted that things can change in the future.
“Have no doubt though, should the winds of political fortune shift and the House were to reissue a subpoena to Dr. Kupperman, he will face the same conflicting directives that precipitated this suit. If so, he will undoubtedly be right back before this Court seeking a solution to a Constitutional dilemma that has long-standing political consequences: balancing Congress’s well-established power to investigate with a President’s need to have a small group of national security advisors who have some form of immunity from compelled Congressional testimony,” said Leon.
He added: “Fortunately, however, I need not strike that balance today!”
The House had withdrawn their subpoena for Kupperman’s testimony in November, writing in a court case, “The subpoena at issue in this matter has been withdrawn and there is no current intention to reissue it.”