White House budget official Mark Sandy signals he will testify in impeachment inquiry

John Fritze and Nicholas Wu, USA TODAY

WASHINGTON – A career aide inside the White House budget office signaled Thursday he will testify in the House impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, the latest case of an administration official bucking orders to ignore congressional subpoenas.

Mark Sandy, a former acting director of the Office of Management and Budget who is currently the agency’s associate director for national security programs, could shed additional light on the reason nearly $400 million in aid to Ukraine was held up this year.

“If Mr. Sandy is subpoenaed, he will appear for a deposition this Saturday,” Sandy’s attorney, Barbara “Biz” Van Gelder, told USA TODAY.

Sandy, who is expected to testify behind-closed doors, is the latest case of a career official defying White House orders to resist congressional subpoenas in the matter, which Trump attorneys describe as an unconstitutional “witch hunt.” He would be the first budget office official to cooperate at a time when there are questions about why the aid was withheld.

White House officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

More: How to stay updated on USA TODAY's impeachment coverage

The Democratic-led inquiry is based on a July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in which Trump discussed military assistance for Ukraine and suggested Zelensky help with investigations into Joe Biden’s son Hunter and unsubstantiated allegations about Ukraine’s involvement in the 2016 presidential election.

Other officials have testified that they became aware in July that a hold had been placed on the Ukraine aid when an unnamed OMB staffer disclosed the decision during an inter-agency phone call but could not say why.

Contributing: David Jackson 

President Donald Trump listens as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the Oval Office of the White House, Nov. 13, 2019, in Washington.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: White House aide Mark Sandy may testify in Trump impeachment inquiry