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House Select Committee Is Investigating Trump For Potential Criminal Conspiracy

House Select Committee Is Investigating Trump For Potential Criminal Conspiracy

A new report from The Guardian quotes two anonymous sources close to the House Select Committee investigating the Capitol attack who says the panel is examining whether Donald Trump oversaw a criminal conspiracy after communications turned over by Trump’s former chief of staff Mark Meadows and others suggested the White House coordinated efforts to stop then-President-Elect Biden’s certification, the sources said.

The sources said that members and counsel on the Select Committee are examining whether in seeking to stop the certification, Trump and his aides violated the federal law that prohibits obstruction of a congressional proceeding – in this case, the joint session of Congress on January 6th. The Select Committee believes that Trump may be culpable for an obstruction charge given he failed for hours to intervene to stop the violence at the Capitol perpetrated by his supporters in his name, according to the Guardian.

[Photo by Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images]
The Select Committee has several thousand messages, among which include some that suggest the Trump White House included a number of House Republicans during a briefing on its plan for then-Vice President Mike Pence to abuse his ceremonial role and not certify the votes, the sources said. The fact that the Select Committee has messages suggesting the Trump White House directed Republican members of Congress to execute a scheme to stop Biden’s certification is significant as it could give rise to the panel considering referrals for potential crimes, the sources told the Guardian.

 

The committee’s new focus on the potential for a conspiracy marks an aggressive escalation in its inquiry as it confronts evidence that suggests the former president potentially engaged in criminal conduct egregious enough to warrant a referral to the Justice Department. The panel is also looking at whether Trump oversaw an unlawful conspiracy that involved coordination between the “political elements” of the White House plan communicated to Republican lawmakers and extremist groups that stormed the Capitol, the sources said. But House investigators are yet to find evidence tying Trump personally to the Capitol attack, the sources said, and may ultimately only recommend referrals for the straight obstruction charge, which has already been brought against around 275 rioters, rather than for conspiracy.

The DOJ could still charge Trump and his aides separately from the Select Committee investigation, but one of the sources said the panel – as of mid-December – had no idea whether the agency is actively examining Trump’s alleged potential criminality.

Read the full profile at The Guardian.

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