Along With the Now Indicted Steve Bannon, Whom Has The Jan. 6 Select Committee Subpoenaed — and Why?

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection has issued almost three dozen subpoenas as it aggressively seeks information about the origins of the attack and what former President Donald Trump did — or didn’t do — to stop it.

The panel — which referred Trump campaign and White House strategist Steve Bannon’s flouting of a subpoena to the Department of Justice, leading to Friday’s criminal indictment — is exploring several paths simultaneously, demanding testimony from Trump’s inner circle about his actions that day as well as from outside advisers who organized the rally he spoke at the morning of Jan. 6 and allies who strategized about how to overturn President Joe Biden’s victory. They are also turning toward former Vice President Mike Pence’s orbit and questioning witnesses about efforts to pressure him to stop the congressional electoral count.

An attendee’s sign calls for the impeachment of Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming as Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida speaks at a rally in Cheyenne, Wyo., on Jan. 28. Cheney is one of two Republicans on the House select committee investigating the events of Jan. 6. MICHAEL CIAGLO/GETTY IMAGES

The committee is expected to issue more subpoenas as some witnesses, especially those closest to Trump, have indicated they won’t comply or refused to answer questions. But lawmakers on the panel have already talked to more than 150 people, most of them voluntarily, about what led up to the violent siege by Trump’s supporters.

While the committee doesn’t have the power to charge or otherwise punish anyone for their actions, the seven Democrats and two Republicans on the panel say they hope to build the most comprehensive record yet of what happened when hundreds of Trump’s supporters brutally pushed past police and broke into the Capitol, interrupting the certification of Biden’s victory.

A look at whom the committee has subpoenaed, and what is to come in the panel’s investigation:

Trump’s inner circle: The committee’s first subpoenas in late September went to four men who were among his most loyal allies: former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, Bannon, longtime communications aide Daniel Scavino and Kashyap Patel, a White House national-security aide who had moved to the Pentagon in the weeks after Trump lost the election.

Bannon immediately told the panel he wouldn’t cooperate, citing a letter from Trump’s lawyer claiming that his conversations should be privileged and shielded from the public. The committee balked at that reasoning and the House voted to hold Bannon in contempt, referring the matter to the Justice Department, ultimately resulting in Friday’s two-count indictment against Bannon alleging criminal contempt of Congress.

Meadows could also be held in contempt after his lawyer indicated Thursday that he would not testify, saying in a statement that the courts would have to decide, after the White House notified him that Biden would waive Trump’s claims of executive privilege over the testimony.

From the archives (September 2020): White House chief of staff Mark Meadows lashes out as FBI director fails to echo Trump claims about vote fraud

The House has since subpoenaed several other well-known members of Trump’s circle, including former press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and top aides Stephen Miller and Jason Miller. The committee said all three participated in efforts to spread false information and may have been with Trump as the attack unfolded — a key area of investigation, as little is still known about what he did to try to stop it.

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John Eastman May Have Blown Up Privilege to Avoid Testifying About Trump

A conservative lawyer subpoenaed by the Capitol riot investigators may have set himself up to lose any claim of privilege.

John Eastman, who wrote legal memos outlining ways former Vice President Mike Pence could try to overturn the 2020 election, made an admission months ago that could debilitate any argument to keep his conversations with former President Donald Trump confidential.

In the interview on May 5, during which Eastman was talking to Denver radio talk show host Peter Boyles , he spoke about meeting with Trump and Pence about contesting the election results and said he had permission to talk about it.

“And by the way, I would normally not talk about a private conversation I have with a client, but I have express authorization from my client, the president of the United States at the time, to describe what occurred — to truthfully describe what occurred in that conversation,” he said.


The House committee investigating the Capitol riot subpoenaed Eastman , along with several others, on Monday, seeking documents and testimony. Eastman recently distanced himself from the scenarios outlined in his memos during a  National Review  interview . He has also drawn interest for his participation in a so-called “war room” at the Willard Hotel with other Trump allies during the days surrounding the Capitol riot and because he spoke at the same rally Trump did the day of the siege.

A letter to Eastman, signed by Chairman Bennie Thompson , even cites the May 5 interview, noting, “You have stated publicly that President Trump has authorized you to discuss the matters at issue, this waiving any applicable attorney-client and attorney work product privileges.”

Watergate sleuth Bob Woodward agreed with this assessment and made the case that any argument for privilege would flounder in court.

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