Who has the Capitol riot committee subpoenaed so far?

The Capitol riot committee is preparing to unveil its’ findings in a series of public hearings to be held in 2022

Andrew Feinberg
Washington, DC
Wednesday 22 December 2021 19:05 GMT
Alex Jones, Roger Stone subpoenaed by House Jan. 6 committee

As the one-year anniversary of the January 6 insurrection approaches, the House select committee charged with investigating the worst attack on the US Capitol since Major General Robert Ross ordered it burned in August 1814 has heard testimony from more than 300 witnesses, received more than 30,000 records and documents, and is preparing to reveal its findings to the public in a series of televised hearings to be held in 2022.

While the identities of most of the witnesses who have given evidence to the committee of seven Democrats and two Republicans remain shrouded in secrecy, the committee is known to have issued more than 50 subpoenas to individuals connected with the events of 6 January — the vast majority of whom previously worked for the Trump administration or former President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign — as well as three extremist groups known to have participated in the violence that day.

A review The Independent has conducted of the publicly-available letters sent to subpoena recipients by committee chairman Bennie Thompson shows that the committee appears to be looking into several different lines of investigation, including the planning of the 6 January rally, which led to the Capitol riot, the Trump White House’s involvement in that planning as well as the role Trump administration officials played in the campaign’s push to overturn the 2020 election, and what campaign and White House officials knew about the possibility of violence before Mr Trump spoke at that day’s rally.

Most recently, the select committee issued a subpoena to James P “Phil” Waldron, the retired US Army colonel who reportedly authored a 36-page “coup PowerPoint” slide deck, now in the committee’s possession, which laid out plans for Mr Trump to declare a “national security emergency” and use National Guard soldiers to seize ballots for sham recounts in swing states. The committee has also requested cooperation from one sitting member of Congress, Representative Scott Perry of Pennsylvania.

Here is a comprehensive list of all those who’ve received subpoenas or document requests from the committee, organised by the role they played on 6 January.

The House of Representatives

The committee’s first request for documents and testimony from a fellow House member has been directed to Mr Perry, who is the incoming chairman of the ultra right-wing House Freedom Caucus.

The Pennsylvania Republican, who has served in the House since 2013, led GOP efforts to object to the Keystone State’s electoral votes on the night of 6 January after police and national guard soldiers cleared the pro-Trump mob that had invaded the building earlier that day.

According to a report issued by the Senate Judiciary Committee earlier this year, Mr Perry also played a key role in fashioning plans for the Department of Justice to pressure Republican-controlled legislatures in swing states won by President Joe Biden with false election fraud claims so they would replace their states’ Democratic electoral college delegations with pro-Trump electors, notwithstanding the expressed will of voters.

On Monday, Mr Thompson released a letter to Mr Perry requesting “all relevant electronic or other communications on these and other topics related to January 6th, including [his] communications with the Trump legal team, the former President himself, and others who were involved in planning the events of January 6th”. The Mississippi Democrat said the committee was seeking Mr Perry’s “voluntary cooperation” rather than issuing a subpoena out of “tremendous respect for the prerogatives of Congress and the privacy of its Members”.

Mr Perry has since announced that he will refuse to cooperate with the committee, which he called “illegitimate, and not duly constituted under the rules of the US House of Representatives” in a 21 December statement posted to his official Twitter account.

In response, a select committee spokesperson said Mr Perry had “fail[ed] to note that multiple federal courts, acting pursuant to Article 3 of our Constitution, have already rejected the former president’s claims that the committee lacks an appropriate legislative purpose”.

“The Select Committee prefers to gather relevant evidence from members cooperatively, but if members with directly relevant information decline to cooperate and instead endeavor to cover up, the Select Committee will consider seeking such information using other tools,” the spokesperson added.

The Trump administration

The committee made clear its intention to investigate the conduct of top Trump administration officials on 6 January when it issued its first four subpoenas to former senior administration officials on 23 September.

One of them, former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, declined to cooperate with the committee entirely, earning a contempt citation from the House – and an indictment for criminal contempt of Congress – for his trouble.

A second, former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, became the first ex-House member to be held in contempt by his former colleagues since 1832 on 14 December when the House voted to refer him to the Department of Justice for possible prosecution.

Mr Meadows turned over roughly 9,000 records to the select committee – including text messages with lawmakers and several Fox News personalities, as well as the now-infamous “coup PowerPoint” reportedly authored by Mr Waldron – but he stopped cooperating with the committee and refused to appear for an 8 December deposition after Mr Thompson issued a subpoena for records of communications Mr Meadows made using his private mobile phone. He has also filed a lawsuit seeking to invalidate subpoenas issued to him and to his telecommunications service provider.

Other ex-Trump administration officials who received subpoenas that day include Kashyap “Kash” Patel, the ex-House Intelligence Committee staffer who was elevated to a top Defense Department post after Mr Trump fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper, Mr Meadows, and Daniel Scavino, who served as Mr Trump’s social media director.

The Independent has previously reported that ex-Trump campaign and administration officials say Mr Scavino would have been well aware of violent “chatter” and planning on pro-Trump social media sites through the campaign and White House’s monitoring operation.

Neither Mr Patel nor Mr Scavino has agreed to fully cooperate with the committee, citing dubious claims of executive privilege made by Mr Trump and his attorney. Mr Scavino, who evaded attempts to serve him with the committee’s subpoena for several weeks, has had his deposition postponed several times, but a committee source says he is “engaging” with the panel.

The select committee has also approved a criminal contempt of congress referral against Jeffrey Clark, the ex-Justice Department official who reportedly tried to goad DOJ leadership into signing a letter urging state legislatures in states won by President Joe Biden to send alternate slates of electors to Congress ahead of the 6 January joint session to certify Mr Biden’s electoral college victory.

But the committee has held back on presenting the measure to the full House of Representatives for approval and has given Mr Clark a final chance to appear for a deposition, where he is expected to invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. The deposition, which was scheduled for last week after being delayed once, has been put on hold again due to what a committee source described to The Independent as a “medical issue” on the part of Mr Clark.

Mr Thompson also issued a round of subpoenas to former Trump White House officials on 9 November, including a number of ex-Trump staffers who would have been in close proximity to Mr Trump on 6 January.

Those recipients and their former positions include:

·      Nicholas Luna, Mr Trump’s personal aide (or “body man”)

·      Oval Office operations coordinator Molly Michael

·      Kayleigh McEnany, White House Press Secretary

·      Stephen Miller, speechwriter and senior policy adviser

·      Cassidy Hutchinson, special assistant for legislative affairs

·      Gen Keith Kellogg, national security adviser to Vice President Mike Pence

·      Chris Liddell, deputy chief of staff for operations

·      John McEntee, head of the White House personnel office

·      Ben Williamson, a senior adviser to then-chief of staff Mark Meadows

·     Kenneth Klukowski, a senior counsel to Mr Clark at the Department of Justice

Another trio of Trump administration officials received subpoenas from the committee on 9 December: Max Miller, an ex-special assistant to Mr Trump who served as associate director of presidential personnel, ex-White House political director Brian Jack, and former White House presidential advance director Robert “Bobby” Peede Jr.

The Trump campaign and the ‘war room’

The select committee is also investigating what role Mr Trump’s re-election campaign officials and persons working alongside them may have played in organising and fomenting the violence that occurred on 6 January.

On 8 November, Mr Thompson issued subpoenas to Bill Stepien, the veteran New Jersey political operative and ex-Chris Christie aide who ran Mr Trump’s 2020 campaign following the demotion of Brad Parscale after a disastrous rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Two other Trump campaign officials receiving subpoenas that day were Jason Miller, a senior adviser and communications consultant who played a significant role in Mr Trump’s push to overturn election results, and Angela McCallum, who served as an assistant to Mr Stepien.

Mr Thompson and the select committee have also demanded documents and testimony from former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn and John Eastman, a conservative law professor who authored a pair of memoranda meant to give then-vice president Mike Pence reason to purportedly reject electoral votes from states won by Mr Biden. The select committee has also demanded documents and testimony from Taylor Budowich, an ex-Trump campaign staffer who currently serves as the communications director for Mr Trump’s official post-presidency office and his “Save America” political action committee.

Both Mr Flynn and Mr Eastman – who have since filed lawsuits seeking to prevent the committee from obtaining their phone records – were in close proximity to Mr Trump in the days leading up to the 6 January insurrection, and also participated in a “war room” planning session at the Willard Hotel on 5 January.

Another subpoena recipient who was reportedly present at the “war room” is Bernard Kerik, the disgraced New York Police Department commissioner who received a presidential pardon from Mr Trump, and who in the weeks prior to 6 January bankrolled the Willard suites used by a number of other Trump associates, including former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani.

Outside groups and ‘Stop the Steal’

The select committee has also subpoenaed many of the groups and persons associated with the “Stop the Steal” movement which culminated in the 6 January insurrection, including Amy and Kylie Kremer, the mother and daughter duo who co-founded the “Women for America First” group that obtained a permit for the rally which Mr Trump spoke at as violence broke out at the Capitol, as well as Nathan Martin and Ali Akbar — aka Ali Alexander — the pro-Trump activist who founded the actual “Stop the Steal” group that obtained a permit to rally on the Capitol grounds on 6 January.

Last month, the committee also demanded documents and testimony from representatives of three extremist groups that participated in the violence on 6 January, the Proud Boys, Oath Keepers, and 1st Amendment Praetorian.

Two GOP activists who were behind the “Stop the Steal” rally and who received subpoenas from the committee – “Women for America First” organiser Jennifer Stockton and her fiancé Dustin Stockton – gave evidence in separate depositions on 15 and 14 December. Mr Stockton’s attorney, Josh Naas, told reporters that his client brought a “treasure trove” of documents to the deposition with the intent of turning them over to the committee.

Other persons associated with the 6 January rally who received subpoenas include:

·      Maggie Mulvaney, niece of ex-Trump acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney who served as “VIP lead” for the 6 January Ellipse rally

·      Caroline Wren, GOP organiser and 6 January “VIP Lead”

·      Megan Powers, consultant and “operations manager” for 6 January rally

·      Justin Caporale, Event Strategies “project manager” for 6 January rally

·      Tim Unes, Event Strategies “stage manager” for 6 January rally

·      Katrina Pierson, former Trump campaign spokesperson who served as a liaison between rally planners and the White House

·      Lyndon Brentnall, rally “on-site supervisor”

·. Hannah Salem Stone, rally organiser

·      Cynthia Chafian, “Women for America First” permit signer and Eighty Percent Coalition founder

·      Alex Jones, pro-Trump conspiracy theorist and Infowars host. Mr Jones was schedule to appear for a deposition on 18 December and had announced his intention to assert his Fifth Amendment rights, but his deposition has been postponed and he is said to be “engaging” with the select committee. He has also filed a lawsuit seeking to quash a committee subpoena for his telecommunications records.

· Roger Stone, conspiracy theorist, former Trump adviser and GOP consultant. Mr Stone appeared for his deposition on 8 December but invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

· Proud Boys leader Henry “Enrique” Tarrio

· Oath Keepers founder Elmer Stewart Rhodes

· Robert Patrick Lewis, founder of 1st Amendment Praetorian

· Bryan Lewis, a GOP activist who obtained a permit for a 6 January rally outside the Capitol to “urge Congress to nullify electoral votes from states that made illegal changes to voting rules during their elections”

· Kimberly Fletcher, the “Moms for America” activist who applied for permits to hold rallies at the Capitol to “support election integrity” on 5 and 6 January in coordination with Mr Akbar.

·.    Edward Martin Jr, president of the Phyllis Schlafly Eagles and reported organiser and fundraiser for the 6 January “Stop the Steal” rally organised by Mr Akbar.

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