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Special Report: Jan. 6 House Committee Formally Subpoenas Trump

The House Committee investigating the January 6th attack on the US Capitol issues a subpoena for Trump's testimony and documents.
Special Report: Jan. 6 House Committee Formally Subpoenas Trump

The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack issued a subpoena on Friday to Donald J. Trump, paving the way for a potentially historic court fight over whether Congress can compel testimony from a former president, reports the New York Times.

Jan. 6 Panel Issues Subpoena to Trump, Setting Up Legal Battle Over Testimony (New York Times)

Excerpt from the New York Times: The subpoena was the most aggressive step taken so far by what was already one of the most consequential congressional investigations in decades. Coming as the Justice Department conducts a separate criminal inquiry into efforts to overturn the 2020 election and weeks before the midterm elections, the subpoena threatened to thrust Mr. Trump and the Jan. 6 committee into a protracted legal battle that could ultimately be decided by the Supreme Court. Representative Liz Cheney, Republican of Wyoming and the committee’s vice chairwoman, said this week that if Mr. Trump refused to comply, members of the panel would "take the steps we need to take," although it was unclear how successful any enforcement effort would be, particularly if Republicans win control of the House in next month’s elections. The subpoena to Mr. Trump requires him to turn over documents by Nov. 4 and to appear for a deposition on or about Nov. 14. It says the interview could last several days.
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According to the Wall Street Journal, in a letter to Mr. Trump, the committee said its investigation showed that "you personally orchestrated and oversaw a multi-part effort to overturn the 2020 presidential election and to obstruct the peaceful transition of power."

Jan. 6 Committee Subpoenas Former President Donald Trump (Wall Street Journal)

Excerpt from the Wall Street Journal: Mr. Trump hasn’t indicated he will cooperate but hasn’t ruled it out. Last week, he criticized the vote by the committee to subpoena him. "Why didn’t the Unselect Committee ask me to testify months ago," he wrote on Truth Social. "Because the Committee is a total ‘BUST’ that has only served to further divide our Country." Mr. Trump could comply with the subpoena and testify. He could also appear and assert his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, a step he took recently in a New York probe of his financial dealings. Mr. Trump could also contest the legitimacy of the subpoena in court or simply refuse to appear, potentially setting up a high-stakes legal standoff. A lawyer who represents Mr. Trump said the subpoena will be reviewed, while criticizing the committee for its public release. "As with any similar matter, we will review and analyze it, and will respond as appropriate to this unprecedented action," David A. Warrington said.
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The subpoena was widely expected after the committee voted unanimously Oct. 13 in its final hearing that provided new evidence and testimony to bolster the bipartisan panel’s argument that the deadly violence on Jan. 6 was the direct and predictable result of Trump’s choices in the weeks after he lost his bid for reelection, writes the Washington Post.

"As demonstrated in our hearings, we have assembled overwhelming evidence, including from dozens of your former appointees and staff, that you personally orchestrated and oversaw a multipart effort to overturn the 2020 presidential election and to obstruct the peaceful transition of power," Chairman Bennie G. Thompson (D-Miss.) and vice chair Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) said in a statement, part of a 10-page letter to Trump.

Excerpt from the Washington Post: Cheney and Thompson outlined 19 document requests, in which they are seeking Trump’s communications with Roger Stone, former Secret Service agent Anthony Ornato, attorneys John Eastman and Sidney Powell, and more than a dozen other people and members of extremists groups. The committee is requesting the "information sufficient to identify every telephone or other communications device" that Trump used from Nov. 3, 2020, to Jan. 20, 2021. They also specifically requested communications conducted on Signal, an encrypted phone messaging application, on any personal devices, or communication conducted by any other means. The committee also is seeking documents by Nov. 4 and requesting that Trump testify under oath on or about Nov. 14.
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Finally, in a related story and exclusive from the Washington Post, it's reported that some of the classified documents recovered by the FBI from Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home and private club included highly sensitive intelligence regarding Iran and China, according to people familiar with the matter. If shared with others, such information could expose intelligence-gathering methods that the United States wants to keep hidden from the world.

Mar-a-Lago classified papers held U.S. secrets about Iran and China (Washington Post)

Excerpt from the Washington Post: At least one of the documents seized by the FBI describes Iran’s missile program, according to these people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe an ongoing investigation. Other documents described highly sensitive intelligence work aimed at China, they said. Unauthorized disclosures of specific information in the documents would pose multiple risks, experts say. People aiding U.S. intelligence efforts could be endangered, and collection methods could be compromised. In addition, other countries or U.S. adversaries could retaliate against the United States for actions it has taken in secret. The classified documents about Iran and China are considered among the most sensitive the FBI has recovered to date in its investigation of Trump and his aides for possible mishandling of classified information, obstruction and destruction of government records.
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