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How Mark Meadows can dodge the Tuesday deadline to appear in Fulton County grand jury: legal analyst explains
Third-year Harvard Law School student Anna Bower, who also writes for Lawfare, explained that there's a chance Donald Trump's chief of staff could be a no-show for the Fulton County grand jury tomorrow.
As former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner explained in his "Justice Matters" video Monday, Meadows is being called in as part of the ongoing investigation of whether Trump committed fraud in his attempt to overthrow the Georgia election in 2020. Meadows not only organized a call between Trump and Republican officials who had been dodging him, Meadows also traveled down to Georgia demanding to watch the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and election officials conduct the signature match.
The Meadows subpoena set a deadline for Tuesday for him to appear and it is expected he will comply with the grand jury, unlike his cooperation with the House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on Congress. Still, Bower noted Meadows could be a no-show. When the Justice Department called him, however, it was another story.
"Meadows is an out-of-state witness; he claims to reside in South Carolina," Bower explained. "While jurisdiction to subpoena a witness typically ends at a state’s borders, both Georgia and South Carolina have adopted the Uniform Act to Secure the Attendance of Witnesses From Without a State in Criminal Proceedings."
"Meadows can be compelled to testify in Georgia if a South Carolina judge issues an order directing him to do so," she continued. "But securing that summons is a multi-step process. First, a GA judge must certify that Meadows is a material witness."
She posted the certification issued in Georgia by Judge McBurney last month, saying:
"Based on the representations made by the State in the attached 'Petition for Certification of Need for Testimony Before Special Purpose Grand Jury' the Court finds that Mark Randall Meadows, born July 28, 1959, (hereinafter, 'The Witness') is a necessary and material witness to the Special Purpose Grand Jury investigation. The Court further finds that the Witness currently resides in Sunset, Pickens County, South Carolina."
"Then prosecutors must present the certification to a South Carolina judge and request that the judge issue an order for Meadows to appear in Georgia," Bower explained. Interestingly, a Sept. 9 filing in Pickens County did exactly that when Fulton County prosecutors began working with the local solicitor.
If Meadows decides to fight the subpoena by not showing up, it would mean the South Carolina judge would hold a hearing to decide if Meadows is necessary to the investigation and that his trip to Georiga won't result in a "hardship." You might recall Rudy Giuliani attempted to claim a hardship, saying that due to medical reasons he couldn't fly. Lawyers offered to pay for a bus ticket to Georgia.
The court never scheduled a hearing or issued an order on the Pickens County information, Bower said. So, she called the clerk's office to ask.
"The person I spoke to told me that they're still waiting to hear from the judge," she said. "So, if Mark Meadows doesn't show up in GA tomorrow...it might be because he's not yet required to do so by law. Of course, it's also possible that Meadows agreed to waive the material witness hearing and/or stipulated to a voluntary appearance in Georgia. That would vitiate the need for a summons from a South Carolina judge."
On Monday, former Donald Trump attorney and fixer Michael Cohen performed a peculiar impression of his onetime boss declassifying top secret documents that were stashed at his Mar-a-Lago country club in Palm Beach, Florida.
"He turns around and he wants to use the Jedi mind trick," said Cohen, putting on an impression of Master Yoda from Star Wars. "Declassify, we do, hrmm?"
\u201cOh my god you have to watch @MichaelCohen212's impression of Trump declassifying documents with his mind\u201d— MeidasTouch (@MeidasTouch) 1664240600
The former president is under investigation by the Justice Department over the documents, which were removed as he left office, and which the National Archives repeatedly demanded be returned. The investigation escalated as it became clear Trump was in possession of documents classified at the highest level, including documents that contained information about clandestine human intelligence and the nuclear technology of a foreign power.
Trump has tried to claim that he has the power to declassify documents just by thinking about doing it — a claim that doesn't have any basis in law.
DOJ officials were temporarily blocked from a counterintelligence review of the recovered information when Aileen Cannon, a Trump-appointed district judge in Florida, demanded a special master first review all the documents for privilege.
That order was partially stayed earlier this month when a three-judge panel on the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, including two other Trump-appointed judges, allowed the DOJ access to the classified information. The special master, Senior Judge Raymond Dearie, will continue to review non-classified documents seized at Mar-a-Lago.
Republican former congressman downplays his Jan. 6 revelations in new book after committee members get mad
The Washington Post reported over the weekend that staff and officials on the House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on Congress were not happy with former Rep. Denver Riggleman (R-VA), who was working on the committee as a staffer until April 2022.
While officials like Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) and Rep. Zoe Lofgren have indicated that they followed up on everything Riggleman said and that there was not a lot of news in his book, behind the scenes it was another matter. According to former Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO), members are "furious" with Riggleman.
Appearing on MSNBC Monday evening, Riggleman appeared to downplay the revelations that he included in the book, which will be released publicly on Tuesday. Sunday evening, his interview with "60 Minutes" showed him giving details about the link between phone calls of insurrectionists and militias directly to the White House and officials.
"I did not betray their trust. I was gonna write a book beforehand, back in 2021, I said that," Riggleman said. "The thing is, I don't make this about, you know, some kind of beef about the committee, because obviously, they did not read the book yet. It's a really — what it comes down to. It's a little surprising that things some individuals say, that don't think I've done a fantastic job, and it was a little interesting to see them say some of those things."
While Riggleman said that there is information about the committee's revelations in the book, it's all things that have been public. He said that he simply tries to digest the findings in a way for everyday people.
The main portion of the book is about his experience being a pariah of the GOP after performing a gay wedding for two staffers. He explained that not only did he become a target, but "people [were] messing with my vehicle when my daughter [was] driving it, which was actually a threat of my life."
"And I have someone come to my place, after marrying my two staffers, and scream, you are the general of the sodomite. I was called the antichrist. My wife was called this spawn of satan."
That is the main point of the book outside of the Jan. 6 piece.
See a clip of the interview below or at the link here:
GOP former congressman downplays his Jan. 6 revelations in new book after committee members get mad www.youtube.com