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Jan 6 Committee Subpoenas Six Trump Insiders

November 8, 2021 by Dan McCue
Insurrectionists loyal to President Donald Trump stand outside the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Jan. 6, 2021. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

WASHINGTON — The committee investigating the violent assault on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, subpoenaed six close associates of former President Donald Trump on Monday, a sign the inquiry is ramping up to a new level.

In a statement announcing the subpoenas, Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said the committee is demanding records and testimony from individuals associated with the so-called “war room” that drove efforts to halt the counting of electoral votes in the run-up to the violence of Jan. 6.

Those issued subpoenas Monday include Bill Stepien, manager of Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign; Jason Miller, a senior adviser to the campaign; Angela McCallum, national executive assistant to the campaign; John Eastman, a lawyer who advised the former president; Michael Flynn, a former national security adviser to Trump who talked with Trump ahead of the insurrection; and former New York City police commissioner Bernard Kerik.

“In the days before the January 6th attack, the former President’s closest allies and advisors drove a campaign of misinformation about the election and planned ways to stop the count of Electoral College votes,” Thompson continued. “The Select Committee needs to know every detail about their efforts to overturn the election, including who they were talking to in the White House and in Congress, what connections they had with rallies that escalated into a riot, and who paid for it all.” 

He added: “The Select Committee expects all witnesses to cooperate with our investigation as we work to get answers for the American people, recommend changes to our laws that will strengthen our democracy, and help ensure nothing like January 6th ever happens again.”

As detailed in a recent story in The Washington Post, the subpoenaed individuals, all loyal Trump lieutenants, hunkered down in the luxury Willard Hotel and used a set of rooms and suites as a command center from which they hoped to overturn the results of the 2020 election.

Citing memos by a conservative pro-Trump legal scholar, the Post said the effort was led by Trump’s personal lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani, and that former chief White House strategist Stephen Bannon was an occasional presence as the effort’s senior political adviser. 

The effort allegedly culminated on Jan. 4, two days before the siege on the Capitol, when  Eastman outlined scenarios for denying Biden the presidency in an Oval Office meeting on Jan. 4 with Trump and Vice President Mike Pence.

The rioters who violently pushed back police to break into the Capitol and interrupted the electoral count of Biden’s victory repeated Trump’s false claims of widespread fraud, and the committee says the six people subpoenaed helped amplify the misinformation in the days ahead of the attack. 

Trump’s false claims came as election officials and courts across the country verified Biden’s win, and as his own attorney general said there was no evidence of fraud.

Dan can be reached at [email protected] and at https://twitter.com/DanMcCue

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