Enough evidence found to indict Trump: Jan. 6 panelists
The House of Representatives committee investigating the January 6 riots is asserting that it has found evidence to indict former US President Donald Trump.
Members of the House committee investigating the January 6 Capitol riot said Sunday they had found enough evidence to criminally indict former US President Donald Trump for seeking to overturn the results of the 2020 US elections.
The evidence, the panelists claim, is enough for the Department of Justice to consider an "unprecedented" criminal indictment against Trump for the events that unfolded on January 6, the day Congress sought to ratify Biden's win.
Trump's campaign manager, Bill Stepien, is among the witnesses scheduled to testify at a hearing set to take place on Monday and which focuses on Trump's efforts to spread his allegations of his opponent stealing the election, the committee said.
In light of the hearings for the Capitol riots, Representative Adam Schiff said he would like the department to investigate any criminal activity on Trump's part. Schiff, a Democrat who leads the House Intelligence Committee, said there were certain actions that outline the efforts to overturn the election results, which he does not see the Justice Department investigating.
The committee's public hearings kicked off last week, with members laying out their case against Trump to show how he was continuously pedaling his claims of election fraud, despite several advisers asking him to stray away from his bid to overturn the election results.
Additional evidence will come to light later this week, which Democrats say will show that the former Republican president and some of his advisers massively engaged in efforts to spread misinformation, pressured the DoJ to accept the false claims of election fraud, and urged then-Vice President Mike Pence to reject state electors and block the January 6 ratification vote.
Stepien is a longtime ally of Trump, and his allyship with the Republican saw him becoming a top adviser to the Trump-endorsed Wyoming House candidate Harriet Hageman.
Trump spokesperson Taylor Budowich criticized the committee's decision to call Stepien to the witness stand as "politically motivated".
Other witnesses on the list include BJay Pak, the top federal prosecutor in Atlanta who left his post on January 4, 2021, Chris Stirewalt, the former political editor for Fox News, Washington's elections attorney Benjamin Ginsberg, and former Philadelphia city commissioner Al Schmidt.
The House panel will also bring up to question the millions of dollars Trump's team brought in fundraising in the lead-up to the January 6 riot, sources have stressed.
"Once the evidence is accumulated by the Justice Department, it needs to make a decision about whether it can prove to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt the president's guilt or anyone else's," Schiff said. "But they need to be investigated if there’s credible evidence, which I think there is."
Maryland Democrat representative Jamie Raskin revealed that the committee had already laid out criminal statuses they believe Trump violated in legal pleadings.
US Attorney General Merrick Garland did not go into details on whether he would be willing to prosecute Trump, an action that would have major repercussions on the US political arena, especially in light of an election season in which the former president has been quite vocal about his intention to run for office again.
If the legal proceedings go according to the Jan 6 committee's plans, Donald Trump would become the first ever president or ex-president to be indicted in the history of the United States. The only one who came closer was former President Richard Nixon.
Rudy Giuliani, one of former US President Donald Trump's primary lawyers throughout his efforts to clutch onto his seat at the White House, is the latest piece of the Trump domino to fall in connection to his bids to overturn the 2020 election results. Moreover, former White House aide Peter Navarro was recently charged with contempt of Congress, and subsequently arrested for his refusal to cooperate with the probe into the January 6 riots.
Giuliani had spearheaded a pro-Trump lawsuit seeking to overturn the election results in Pennsylvania. The suit, had the bids been met with success, would have invalidated as many as 1.5 million mail-in ballots, but it was dismissed by courts.
The Office of Disciplinary Counsel accused Giuliani of violating Pennsylvania Rules of Professional Conduct "in that he brought a proceeding and asserted issues therein without a non-frivolous basis in law and fact for doing so" and "that he engaged in conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice."