It was recently reported that on May 22, former National Security Advisor for the Trump White House Gen. Michael Flynn declined a subpoena request by the Senate Intelligence Committee and invoked the 5th Amendment. Flynn is currently under investigation for colluding with Russian officials on behalf of the Trump campaign and separately, lying to government officials about taking foreign payments when he applied for his security clearance.

Recent news also revealed that President Trump told at least two intelligence officials to push back against the FBI's investigation over his campaign connections with Russian officials, which reveals a pattern of defiance by the Trump administration and its surrogates.

As Blasting News reported, Trump's White House had already refused to turn over their documents on Flynn in late April.

Creating conflicts of interest waivers

The investigation into Donald Trump's campaign and possible Russian collusion are only one of many investigations being conducted on the administration. At the beginning of the year when there were reports that the Trump transition team had created rules banning lobbyists from joining the White House, many questions arose around possible Conflicts Of Interest as secret waivers were also created for exceptions.

The Office of Government Ethics (OGE) had already confronted the administration on this before and recently tried again but in another act of defiance, Trump's White House reportedly tried to block the OGE from getting the names of lobbyists who were given those waivers.

The conflicts have reportedly reached a new and unprecedented level which began with a letter sent to the OGE by Trump's Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney.

White House refuses to cooperate

The head of the OGE, Walter M.

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Shaub Jr., received a letter from Mulvaney asking that he withdraw his request. While it might not be unusual for them to be so defiant -- because the names of lobbyists the Ethics Office is asking for are of people embedded throughout other government agencies -- the administration's request applies to the OGE withdrawing their own request for these names and waivers, a request that was sent to all federal agencies.

According to a report by the New York Times, the White House has challenged Shaub's legal authority to make such demands.

The Times reports that Shaub sent back a scathing 10-page response to the White House which he shared with ethics officers across various agencies and some members of Congress. His response to Mulvaney said that he rejected their request to withdraw and that he would continue to make his demands. With the waivers the White House gave to these lobbyists, there is no way to know without pursuing the information what ethics statutes they could be in violation of which is likely the entire point. Mr. Shaub was appointed by the Obama administration for a five-year term and is currently in his last year.