According to a report from Politico, the next big clash between the House select committee investigating the Jan 6th Capitol riot and members of Donald Trump's inner circle will play out on Thursday when subpoenaed officials need to respond to the committee whether they comply or not.
As Politico's Kyle Cheney wrote, Trump is faced with "a fast-approaching deadline to attempt to block the National Archives from releasing records from his White House that could shed light on his attempts to overturn the 2020 election results," and Trump associates including former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, Dan Scavino, Steve Bannon and Kash Patel are also on deadline to turn over their own records.
On Friday committee chairman Bennie Thompson drew a line in the sand, stating he was more than willing to issue "criminal referrals" to the DOJ to anyone who ignores the deadline.
With that in mind, and with committee members strongly believing the Trump's associates will balk, the committee has been hearing secret testimony from other members of the former president's administration that could be sprung on the Trump higher-ups should they finally be compelled to answer questions under threat of a DOJ referral.
According to Cheney, "... committee members expect that these witnesses won't willingly cooperate — one of the reasons the panel issued subpoenas without offering them a chance to voluntarily provide documents or testimony," adding, "One reason for their confidence: Witnesses have begun coming forward to testify behind closed doors in transcribed interviews, a setup used by the House Intelligence Committee during Trump's first impeachment."
The Politico report notes, "Almost exactly two years ago, the impeachment panel — helmed by Rep. Adam Schiff, who sits on the Jan. 6 committee today — broke Trump's logjam when it secured a voluntary transcribed interview with veteran diplomat Kurt Volker. That led to a cascade of interviews with other State Department and Pentagon officials," with Cheney adding, "Members of the Jan. 6 committee are hopeful for a similar snowball effect now that their initial interviews have begun."
On Sunday, Politico's Betsy Woodruff Swan reported that subpoenaed Trump officials could face up to one year in jail and a six-figure fine should the DOJ have to step in with a criminal indictment.
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