There's likely 'digital smoking gun evidence' on Republican's phone about Jan. 6: ex-Homeland Security aide
Congressman Scott Perry speaks during CPAC Texas 2022 conference at Hilton Anatole. (lev radin /

Former chief of staff for the secretary of Homeland Security, Miles Taylor, thinks that Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA) is heavily involved with the plotting around the Jan. 6 attack. It was reported Tuesday that a "block" was placed on Perry's phone, which was seized by the FBI. The block is temporary until the federal appeals court decides whether the FBI should be able to possess it. A judge already agreed to the warrant for the phone previously.

Speaking about his work while at DHS, Taylor explained that Perry was seriously concerned about conspiracy theories radicalizing terrorists in the U.S. He also feared the ability of the FBI to get into Americans' phones.

"So, you know, we worked on this hard. Here's a quote from the report Scott Perry wrote with me: 'The unprecedented speed at which Americans are being radicalized by extremists is straining federal law enforcement's ability to monitor and intercept suspects,'" Taylor read. "And then in the leadup to Jan. 6th, what's Scott Perry doing? Fomenting conspiracy theories about Italian satellites that are radicalizing Americans and he's directly engaged in that. The irony is, at the time, he wanted to get into the phones of international terror suspects but now he's fighting like hell to prevent his phone from being looked at by federal law enforcement because it might attach him to that insurrection, that domestic terror attack on the United States Capitol. So, I think this is deeply hypocritical. Scott Perry knows better. When it was an international terrorist, he wanted to do anything possible to protect this country."

Perry is one of many Republican members who asked for a pardon for his activity around the 2020 election. Perry denied the report.

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“Rep. Scott Perry … has refused to testify here,” Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) said during one of the Jan. 6 committee hearings. “As you will see, Representative Perry contacted the White House in the weeks after Jan. 6 to seek a presidential pardon. Multiple other Republican congressmen also sought presidential pardons for their roles in attempting to overturn the 2020 election."

She revealed text messages between Perry and former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows.

“Mark, just checking in as time continues to count down,” Perry texted on Dec. 26, 2020. “11 days to 1/6 and 25 days to inauguration. We gotta get going!” He went on to tell Meadows to talk to "Jeff," meaning Jeffrey Clark.

Wallace asked Taylor what he thinks is in Perry's phone that he's so desperately trying to block from the FBI.

"I think what's on his phone is digital smoking gun evidence of his close involvement in this plot," said Taylor. "We've already seen some of it. He's clearly one of the key players fanning the flames of the conspiracy theory that led to the attack. But there could be more damning evidence, more connections. What I worry about is potential ties to some of these extremist groups. We know other people in Donald Trump's orbit were directly engaging with the people who committed acts of violence. Was Rep. Perry? I think there's probably more for investigators to find there. It's probably one of the reasons the Justice Department has been seeking out that device. He's proven himself to be a key interlocutor in that."

See the full conversation in the video below or at the link here.

What is on Scott Perry's phone?