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Politics White House orders release of Trump records to Jan. 6 committee

07:15  09 october  2021
07:15  09 october  2021 Source:   thehill.com

Jan. 6 probe could affect future congressional oversight

  Jan. 6 probe could affect future congressional oversight The House Jan. 6 select committee’s pursuit of what led to the attack on the Capitol is shaping up to be a fight over congressional oversight authority that may have lasting effects on the way the legislative branch conducts investigations. The panel in August asked 35 telecommunications, email and social media companies, such as Apple […] The post Jan. 6 probe could affect future congressional oversight appeared first on Roll Call.

a group of people standing in front of a building: White House orders release of Trump records to Jan. 6 committee © Getty White House orders release of Trump records to Jan. 6 committee

The White House has ordered presidential record keepers to release a trove of Trump-era documents to the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, arguing unique circumstances compel their disclosure.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Friday the administration would back the committee's sweeping efforts.

"As a part of this process, the president has determined an assertion of executive privilege is not warranted for the first set of documents from the Trump White House that have been provided to us by the National Archives," Psaki said.

Subpoenas could shed light on how Jan. 6 rally came together

  Subpoenas could shed light on how Jan. 6 rally came together The House committee investigating the violent Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, with its latest round of subpoenas, may uncover the degree to which former President Donald Trump, his campaign and White House were involved in planning the rally — which had been billed as a grassroots demonstration — that preceded the riot. The 11 subpoenas sent this week went to people who organized or worked at the rally at the Ellipse where Trump encouraged the crowd to march to the Capitol and told them “you’ll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength, and you have to be strong.

"This is just the first set of documents, and we will evaluate claims of privilege on a case by case basis, but the president has also been clear he believes it to be of the utmost importance for both Congress and the American people to have a complete understanding of the events of that day to prevent them from happening again."

Her comments confirm earlier reporting from NBC News, which obtained a letter from White House counsel Dana Remus to the National Archives.

"President Biden has determined that an assertion of executive privilege is not in the best interests of the United States, and therefore is not justified as to any of the documents," Remus wrote, according to the outlet.

"These are unique and extraordinary circumstances," Remus added. "Congress is examining an assault on our Constitution and democratic institutions provoked and fanned by those sworn to protect them, and the conduct under investigation extends far beyond typical deliberations concerning the proper discharge of the President's constitutional responsibilities. The constitutional protections of executive privilege should not be used to shield, from Congress or the public, information that reflects a clear and apparent effort to subvert the Constitution itself."

Subpoenas could shed light on how Jan. 6 rally came together

  Subpoenas could shed light on how Jan. 6 rally came together The House committee investigating the violent Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, with its latest round of subpoenas, may uncover the degree to which former President Donald Trump, his campaign and White House were involved in planning the rally — which had been billed as a grassroots demonstration — that preceded the riot. The 11 subpoenas sent this week went to people who organized or worked at the rally at the Ellipse where Trump encouraged the crowd to march to the Capitol and told them “you’ll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength, and you have to be strong.

Psaki emphasized on Friday that the tranche of documents released to the committee is only the first and that White House would evaluate further requests on a case-by-case basis.

She also declined to offer specific details on the documents themselves, saying only that they are Trump-era White House records responsive to the Jan. 6 select committee's request to the National Archives.


Video: Trump plans to assert executive privilege in Jan. 6 House probe (MSNBC)

The Sept. 25 request from the committee asks for documents and communications from within the White House "relating in any way" to former first lady Melania Trump; three of the former president's children, Ivanka, Eric and Donald Trump Jr.; son-in-law Jared Kushner; as well as any member of Congress or Hill staffers.

The letter also asks for the National Archives to turn over communications with all of President Trump's top aides, including former chief of staff Mark Meadows, White House counsel Pat Cipollone, national security adviser Robert O'Brien, Hope Hicks, Stephen Miller and Kayleigh McEnany.

Jan 6 committee has subpoenaed witnesses: What happens when they don't comply?

  Jan 6 committee has subpoenaed witnesses: What happens when they don't comply? Trump’s former advisors are now private citizens.Typically, congressional investigators start with a request for records or testimony, just as the select committee did with its records requests to various executive branch agencies and social media companies. If the receiving parties fail to accommodate the requests in good faith, investigators may resort to subpoenas.

The Jan. 6 panel is also seeking White House communications with other key names in Trump's orbit, including Roger Stone, Steve Bannon, Michael Flynn, Trump's onetime attorney Rudy Giuliani and My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell.

The decision from the White House could tee up yet another executive privilege battle with Trump, who has already threatened to sue in order to block four former aides who have been subpoenaed by the committee - a group that includes Bannon and Meadows.

Trump sent a letter to the National Archives on Friday saying he wanted to assert executive privilege to prevent the committee from obtaining more than 40 of the documents it requested, saying he had determined the records "contain information subject to executive privilege, including presidential communications and deliberate process privileges."

In a statement, Trump also accused Democrats of being "drunk on power" and launching a "fake investigation" designed to silence him.

Psaki hinted two weeks ago the White House may make such a determination, telling reporters, Biden "has already concluded that it would not be appropriate to assert executive privilege and so we will respond promptly to these questions as they arise and certainly as they come up from Congress."

Trump loyalists can't hide this truth (opinion)

  Trump loyalists can't hide this truth (opinion) Think the January 6 select committee can't enforce the slew of subpoenas it's served on Trump's inner circle? Think again, write Norman Eisen and Hank Sparks. The four Trump layalists may be eying the Congressional clock and contemplating running it out until January 2023 when a new Congress of unknown majority takes office, but the committee is highly motivated by that very timing and has many ways to get the information it wants on itsWill the House select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection succeed in uncovering the truth about that awful day?

In other cases, the National Archives has not released some documents sought by lawmakers, including for a report from the Senate Judiciary Committee released Thursday that examines Trump's pressure campaign on the Justice Department.

In that case, the National Archives has not turned over documents relating to communications between White House and Justice Department officials between Nov. 3 and Jan. 20. The committee requested these documents in May.

"NARA has not responded to date, and has represented to the Committee that the delay in transitioning electronic Trump records from the White House to NARA may prevent the Committee from obtaining a response for several more months," the report states.

A representative for the National Archives said it has received the request and would respond to it in accordance with rules governing presidential records but did not offer further information on the delay or a time frame.

Brett Samuels contributed. Updated at 6:32 p.m.

January 6 committee: 5 things we learned last week .
The committee investigating the January 6 attack on the US Capitol had a big week. © Steve Helber/AP Political strategist Steve Bannon gestures during a speech during an election rally in Richmond, Va., Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021. Key decisions were made that not only cemented the tone of how the committee has chosen to operate, but also brought future roadblocks further into focus. Here's what last week tells us about the investigation: 1.

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