Home » Jan 6th committee seeks Steve Bannon to be held in contempt while ex-Trump aide refusing subpoena

Jan 6th committee seeks Steve Bannon to be held in contempt while ex-Trump aide refusing subpoena

by Lester Blair
In this Aug. 20, 2020, file photo, President Donald Trump's former chief strategist, Steve Bannon, speaks with reporters in New York after pleading not guilty to charges that he ripped off donors to an online fundraising scheme to build a southern border wall. Trump is expected to pardon Bannon, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021, as part of a flurry of last-minute clemency action that appears to be still in flux in the last hours of his presidency.
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The House Select Committee investigating the Capitol attack will begin criminal contempt proceedings against Steve Bannon, citing the former Trump strategist’s refusal to cooperate with the panel’s subpoena requests at the direction of the former president.

“Mr. Bannon has declined to cooperate with the Select Committee and is instead hiding behind the former President’s insufficient, blanket, and vague statements regarding privileges he has purported to invoke,” committee chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said Thursday. “We reject his position entirely … so we must move forward with proceedings to refer Mr. Bannon for criminal contempt.”

Trump lawyers directed witnesses not cooperating with congressional investigators. They invoked executive privilege. However, the Biden Administration has rejected attempts by Trump to withhold documents for the panel.

Thompson scheduled Tuesday’s committee vote for the adoption of a contempt resolution.

“The Select Committee will use every tool at its disposal to get the information it seeks, and witnesses who try to stonewall the Select Committee will not succeed,” Thompson said.

This committee’s actions represent a significant escalation of its efforts to coerce witnesses. It also likely opens up new legal challenges for testimony and documents.

Thompson’s announcement came a day following the panel subpoenaed Jeffrey Clark, a former Justice Department official. Clark was accused of repeatedly trying to use his position in order to “interrupt peaceful power transfer” and overturn 2020 elections.

Clark has emerged as a central figure in the former president’s efforts to deny President Joe Biden’s election.

“The Select Committee needs to understand all the details about efforts inside the previous administration to delay the certification of the 2020 election and amplify misinformation about the election results,” Thompson said of the Clark subpoena. “We need to understand Mr. Clark’s role in these efforts at the Justice Department and learn who was involved across the administration.”

Acting Assistant U.S. Attorney General Jeffrey Clark speaks as he stands next to Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey A. Rosen during a news conference to announce the results of the global resolution of criminal and civil investigations with an opioid manufacturer at the Justice Department in Washington, Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020.

Last week, Clark was featured prominently in a damning Senate Judiciary Committee report that found he attempted to countermand the top leaders at the department by drafting a letter to Georgia officials seeking to delay the state’s certification of election results.

Bannon’s lawyers did not respond immediately to requests for comment. They have however formally informed the committee that Bannon intends to reject investigators’ requests.

Last week, Bannon’s legal team informed the committee that President Trump has declared his intent to invoke executive privileges.

Kevin Johnson, reporter:Following the Capitol Riot, four police officers died from suicide. They won’t be remembered.

Source: USAToday.com

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