Capitol riot committee subpoenas disgraced ex-Kansas attorney general, OAN host who promoted fake election fraud claims

The latest group to receive subpoenas includes a right-wing television host who aided Mr Trump’s legal efforts, and an ex-Kansas attorney general who lost his law license nearly a decade ago

Andrew Feinberg
Washington, DC
Tuesday 01 March 2022 21:20 GMT
(AFP via Getty Images)
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The House select committee investigating the 6 January insurrection has issued subpoenas to six attorneys connected with former president Donald Trump’s failed 2020 campaign who promoted baseless claims of election fraud in the days leading up to the worst attack on the Capitol since 1814.

In a statement, select committee chairman Bennie Thompson said the latest tranche of subpoenas was issued to aid the nine-member panel’s inquiry into “attempts to disrupt or delay the certification of electoral votes and any efforts to corruptly change the outcome of the 2020 election”.

Two of the highest-profile recipients of these latest subooenas include one former elected official, ex-Kansas attorney General Phillip Kline, and a right-wing television host, Christina Bobb of One America News.

Mr Kline, who served as the Sunflower State’s chief law enforcement officer from 2003 to 2007, was an active participant in many of the more than 60 failed lawsuits filed by Mr Trump’s campaign and his allies in hopes of overturning the then-president’s loss to Joe Biden.

But Mr Kline’s participation through a so-called “election integrity” group called the Amistad Project did not involve him doing any legal work because his law license has been suspended since 2013.

Ms Bobb, who served as the Department of Homeland Security’s executive secretary before taking a job as an anchor and correspondent for the fringe right-wing cable network, served as a legal adviser to Mr Trump’s campaign while covering the election challenges as a member of the media. She was also a major fundraiser for the Arizona senate’s privately funded sham audit of Maricopa County, Arizona election results. She was also reportedly involved in drafting a proposed executive order that would have directed federal agencies to seize voting machines.

Also receiving subpoenas were Cleta Mitchell, a former Foley and Lardner partner who participated in Mr Trump’s infamous phone call with Georgia secretary of state Brad Raffensperger, “stop the steal” attorney Kurt Olsen, and Kenneth Chesebro, a lawyer who drafted a memo advocating for the use of “alternate” electors to overturn the election. Also receiving a subpoena was Katherine Friess, a Washington DC lawyer and lobbyist who reportedly corresponded with election conspiracy theorist Russell Ramsland, Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani, and ex-Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn and was also involved in drafting the voting machine executive order.

“The six individuals we've subpoenaed today all have knowledge related to those matters and will help the Select Committee better understand all the various strategies employed to potentially affect the outcome of the election,” Mr Thompson wrote. He added that the select committee has spoken to “hundreds” of witnesses since it began its investigation law summer and said he and his colleagues “expect” all six to provide the panel with information.

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