Orignally published on 2021-12-08 21:52:22 by www.nytimes.com
But Mr. Meadows also informed the committee he had turned in the cellphone he used on Jan. 6 to his service provider, and he was withholding some 1,000 text messages connected with the device, Mr. Thompson said, prompting additional questions and the need for more cooperation and a deposition.
“There is no legitimate legal basis for Mr. Meadows to refuse to cooperate with the select committee and answer questions about the documents he produced, the personal devices and accounts he used, the events he wrote about in his newly released book and, among other things, his other public statements,” Mr. Thompson wrote.
The committee recently sent a flurry of subpoenas to telecommunications companies seeking the data of dozens of individuals, including Mr. Meadows, prompting his lawyer to object to a request he said sought “intensely personal communications” with no relevance to any legitimate investigation.
The subpoenas, which follow records preservation demands sent to 35 technology and social media companies in August, do not seek the content of any communications but simply the dates and times of when the calls and messages took place, according to a committee aide.
Understand the Claim of Executive Privilege in the Jan. 6. Inquiry
A key issue yet untested. Donald Trump’s power as former president to keep information from his White House secret has become a central issue in the House’s investigation of the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. Amid an attempt by Mr. Trump to keep personal records secret and the indictment of Stephen K. Bannon for contempt of Congress, here’s a breakdown of executive privilege:
The House voted in October to recommend that another of Mr. Trump’s associates, Stephen K. Bannon, be charged with criminal contempt of Congress for refusing to cooperate with the investigation. A federal grand jury subsequently indicted him on two counts that could carry a total of up to two years behind bars. A judge on Tuesday set a July 18 trial date for Mr. Bannon, meaning that the select committee will most likely have to wait the better part of a year, if not longer, for a resolution of his case and any potential cooperation from him.
The committee has also recommended a contempt charge against Jeffrey Clark, a former Justice Department lawyer who participated in Mr. Trump’s efforts to invalidate the 2020 election results, for refusing to cooperate with its inquiry. The panel is waiting to complete that referral until it can determine how much information Mr. Clark is willing to provide during a deposition scheduled for Dec. 16. Mr. Clark has said he will invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.
Another potential witness, John Eastman, a lawyer who wrote a memo that some in both parties have likened to a blueprint for a coup to keep Mr. Trump in power, has also indicated that he plans to invoke the Fifth Amendment in response to the committee’s subpoena.