Daria BedenkoAll materialsWrite to the authorThe 6 January Capitol riots claimed 5 lives, including that of a Capitol police officer, and left the building itself ransacked by a violent mob of those who opposed the certification of the 2020 presidential election results. In order to investigate the riot, a 9/11-style committee was created – not to the pleasure of everyone, however.The 6 January investigative committee has issued a wave of subpoenas targeting a handful of former Trump officials with a goal to probe the origins of the attack, particularly focusing on the former president’s actions during the unfolding riot.The attention of the bipartisan committee has already been drawn to several close Trump allies, with many of them having already refused to participate in the investigation. While the panel does not have the power to punish individuals for their actions, the investigators aim to build a record of what happened and determine the reasons and circumstances of the riot.Here is a round-up of who has been subpoenaed by the 6 January committee, why, and what to expect down the line.
The Latest Wave
On 9 November, the committee subpoenaed 10 former Trump officials.
Among them are people who are believed to have been around the former president on the ill-fated day of 6 January. For example, Nicolas Luna – former personal assistant to the 45th president, commonly known as Trump’s “body man”, who was known to be “in close proximity” to the ex-president on 6 January. According to the committee’s letter to him, Luna was present when Trump called then-Vice President Pence asking him not to certify the election.
Former Vice President Pence’s National Security Adviser Keith Kellogg was also subpoenaed, based on suggestions that he too was at the White House and could have “direct information about the former president’s statements about, and reactions to, the Capitol insurrection”. Kellogg was also said to have been present during at least one January 2021 meeting where Trump pressured Pence not to certify the election results.Cassidy Hutchinson, who served as Special Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs, was also reportedly at the White House on 6 January. Kenneth Klukowski, former Senior Counsel to Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Clark, is said to have been involved in drafting a letter that urged legislatures in certain states to delay certification of the election.Special Assistant to the President and Oval Office Operations Coordinator Molly Michael was allegedly involved in “sending information about alleged election fraud to various individuals at the direction of President Trump”.
6 Jan. Probe Issues New Batch Of Subpoenas For Ex- Officials With ‘Pivotal Roles in Trump Campaign’9 November, 07:32 GMTFormer White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany also discovered herself among those subpoenaed for spreading information about alleged “election fraud”, including making “public statements” about it.
Deputy Assistant to the President and Senior Adviser to Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, Benjamin Williamson, was summoned by the committee as one of those who “without success” tried to “have the former president issue a statement addressing the attack and condemning the violence”.Christopher Liddell, former White House Deputy Chief of Staff, according to the committee’s letter, wanted to resign that day but was persuaded to stay.Former White House Personnel Director John McEntee, per the committee, was present “in the Oval Office when Rudolph Giuliani, Justin Clark, the former president, and former Vice President Pence discussed the audit process in Georgia and listened as Mr Giuliani suggested seizing Dominion voting machines because of alleged fraud”.Last but not least, ex-Trump adviser Steven Miller was addressed by the 6 January panel due to his participation “in efforts to spread false information about alleged voter fraud”.
Who Else Was Subpoenaed?
Among those who earlier received similar letters from the committee are Trump’s most loyal allies, such as ex-White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, former White House strategist Steve Bannon, then-communications aide Daniel Scavino, and Kashyap Patel, former White House national security aide.
Some of them refused to cooperate with the committee straight away. Bannon did so, citing a letter from Trump’s lawyer that said his conversations should be privileged and therefore not publicly disclosed. Meadows also refused to work with the 6 January committee until a court decides whether he is protected by executive privilege – something that incumbent US President Joe Biden said he would not extend for those who seek immunity following the Capitol riot.
Meadows Refuses to Cooperate With Jan. 6 Committee as House Panel Files Contempt Threat Yesterday, 22:23 GMTOther people subpoenaed by the committee include lawyer John Eastman, former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, manager of Trump’s 2020 re-election campaign Bill Stepien, and Angela McCallum, national executive assistant to the Trump campaign.
Trump Fights Back
As the 6 January committee attempted to gain access to Donald Trump’s White House records from the National Archives in order to probe them as part of their investigation, the former president’s legal team filed a lawsuit against the panel, blasting its efforts as “unprecedented in their breadth and scope”.The committee’s chairman, Bennie G. Thompson, fired back, viewing Trump’s move as “little more than an attempt to delay and obstruct our investigation”.
"The presidential records we requested from the National Archives are critical for understanding the terrible events of January 6th", Thompson said. "Along our country's history, the Executive Branch has provided Congress with testimony and information when it has been in the public interest".
On Thursday, however, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia issued an administrative injunction temporarily blocking the House Select Committee from obtaining the records.
House Select Committee
The bipartisan 6 January panel, chaired by Democrat Bennie Thompson, consists mostly of his fellow party members. Among them are Adam Schiff, Zoe Lofgren, Jamie Raskin, Pete Aguilar, Stephanie Murphy, and Elaine Luria.The only two Republicans included in the House Select Committee are Representatives Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger – both labelled by Trump as “RINOs” [Republicans in name only].