Jan 6 committee to issue unprecedented subpoenas to Republican lawmakers

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Jan 6 committee to issue unprecedented subpoenas to Republican lawmakers

The House Select Committee on January 6 is expected to issue unprecedented subpoenas to five Republican lawmakers of Congress to compel their cooperation with the inquiry, according to two sources familiar with the matter.

The committee s chairman, Congressman Bennie Thompson, empowered the panel with subpoenas to House minority leader Kevin McCarthy and other Republicans, including Jim Jordan, Scott Perry, and Andy Biggs and Mo Brooks, the sources said.

The members of the select committee empowered Thompson to take the extraordinary step to subpoena Republican members of Congress after the five refused to accept invitations to give voluntary assistance to the investigation, the sources said.

A spokesman for the panel didn't respond to a request for comment Thursday morning, and did not respond to a request for comment.

The sources said that the committee was trying to get some of the most sensitive information about Donald Trump's efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election in its subpoenas to Republican members of Congress.

The Guardian reported earlier this week that the panel was moving closer to issuing subpoenas to Republican members of Congress, appalled by their refusal to assist the investigation in any way despite their prima facie connections to the events of January 6th.

According to sources familiar with internal deliberations, members of the select committee were no longer allowed to ignore what appeared to be deep involvement in Trump's schemes to overturn the 2020 election results.

The sources cautioned that details could still be changed, because the scope and targets of the subpoenas are not final until the orders are made public. They said the subpoenas are expected to include the contents of the letters seeking voluntary cooperation.

That would indicate that the select committee wants to ask McCarthy the top Republican in the House about what he knew of the former president's involvement in the Capitol riots and why Trump believed he was at fault for the riot.

It also suggests House investigators are interested in more detail about meetings between Trump and Republican members of Congress at the White House before the Capitol attack, where they strategized ways to stop Joe Biden's certification on January 6th.

The letters to Jordan and Biggs made explicit reference to at least one December 2020 meeting between the former president and Republican members of Congress, which was said to have been attended by the House Freedom Caucus.

The panel asked Biggs for information about the plans by pro-Trump activists to march from the Save America rally at Ellipse on January 6 to the Capitol, through his contacts with Ali Alexander and others.

The sources said Biggs's potential contacts with Alexander are of special interest to the investigation.

The committee is trying to untangle claims by Alexander that he was trying to put maximum pressure on Congress while he was voting with Brooks, Biggs and Gosar, and his testimony that he spoke to Biggs'staff and Congressman himself.

Alexander obtained a permit to hold a separate rally at the Capitol on January 6th. But the event never took place, and Alexander was filmed going up the Capitol steps in a stack formation with members of the Oath Keepers militia group.

Thompson said the panel wanted to ask Biggs about his efforts to pressure legislators to create alternate states of electors for Trump in states he lost, as well as an alleged request to Trump for a pardon in the days after the Capitol attack.