Trump Sues January 6 Panel Over Probe
Former US President Donald Trump sues the Congress panel investigating the January 6 capitol attack; the latter accuses him of wanting to delay and obstruct the probe.
Former US President Donald Trump filed a lawsuit against the House committee investigating the January 6 Capitol riot. The riot saw flocks of Trump supporters storming the capitol building, using violence against police, threatening lawmakers, vandalizing federal property, and leaving five people dead - all in an attempt at stopping congress from ratifying then-President-elect Joe Biden's electoral win.
The committee views Trump's move as an attempt to block its work, which aims to hold at least one of the former president's allies in contempt.
Trump is suing the committee, which he claims made an overly broad and a "vexatious, illegal fishing expedition," according to the lawsuit filed in federal court in the District of Columbia.
"The former president’s clear objective is to stop the Select Committee from getting to the facts about January 6th, and his lawsuit is nothing more than an attempt to delay and obstruct our probe," said committee Chairman Bennie Thompson and Vice Chairwoman Liz Cheney in a joint statement Monday.
Trump is also aiming to prevent Congress from obtaining former White House documents, while the committee asserted that it would not back down as it gathers facts and testimonies about the attack.
Trump has constantly made it clear that he would challenge the investigation of the attack, and his latest suit seeks to invalidate the entirety of the congressional request, calling it overly broad, unduly burdensome, and a challenge to the separation of powers. It requests a court injunction to bar the archivist from producing the documents.
The Biden administration cleared the documents requested by Congress for release, waiving the privilege that usually protects White House communications due to the Capitol riot's gravity, seeing it merited the waiving of said privilege.
Over 600 people are facing accusations over their role in the insurgence; however, the committee is currently aiming to hold Steve Bannon, former White House Chief Strategist and Trump's Counselor, in criminal contempt of congress for his defiance of the committee's demands for documents and testimony.
"Mr. Bannon appears to have played a multi-faceted role in the events of January 6th, and the American people are entitled to hear his first-hand testimony regarding his actions," the committee wrote in the resolution.
The resolution lists the many ways Bannon was involved in the leadup to the insurrection, including reports that he encouraged the former president to focus on January 6, the day of the certification of Biden's victory. He also made a comment on January 5, saying, "All hell is going to break loose" the next day.
Once the committee votes on the contempt measure, it will go to the Full House for a vote and then to the Department of Justice, which would then decide whether or not to prosecute.