Oct 26, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Some Jan. 6 witnesses spill for investigators

Rep. Bennie Thompson, chairman of the Jan. 6 Select Committee, is seen speaking.

Rep. Bennie Thompson, chairman of the Jan. 6 Select Committee. Photo: Sarah Silbiger/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Steve Bannon's refusal to comply with a subpoena from the Jan. 6 Select Committee overshadows the fact that other key witnesses are providing reams of evidence to investigators.

Why it matters: Four years of investigative stonewalling by the Trump administration had a demoralizing effect on Democrats, leaving the impression congressional accountability is a pipe dream. The quiet compliance shows a committee investigation is still feared — and has some clout.

Driving the news: Rolling Stone reported Sunday that two organizers of the pro-Trump rallies preceding the Capitol insurrection have told the committee they discussed plans for the protests with House Republicans and Trump aides.

  • The report — despite being hailed by some Democrats as a "smoking gun" and grounds for expulsion — does not allege those Republicans were involved in a plot to attack the Capitol.
  • It does indicate key players in the day's events may be cooperating and providing new information to the committee.

And they're not the only ones.

  • Jeffrey Clark, the former DOJ official whom Trump sought to install as a loyalist attorney general to help overturn the election, is expected to testify next week.
  • CNN reported on Tuesday at least five former Trump administration officials have voluntarily spoken to the committee. A committee spokesperson did not respond to Axios' request for comment.
  • A judge has scheduled oral arguments in former President Trump's lawsuit seeking to block the National Archives from turning over a first batch of documents to the committee. A ruling is possible in early November.

In the meantime, President Biden has again denied Trump's request to assert executive privilege over another batch of records.

  • And the committee is gearing up to issue more subpoenas for witness testimony this week, Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) told Politico.
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