Trump is considering waiving executive privileges for Steve Bannon

Former President Donald Trump is considering sending a letter to Stephen K. Bannon stating that he is renouncing his claim to executive privileges, potentially paving the way for his former chief strategist to testify before the House Special Committee that will test the Pro-Trump riots in Capitol investigated.

The letter would reiterate that Trump invoked executive privilege in September 2021, when Bannon was first subpoenaed by the House Committee. But it would mean that the former president is now ready to give up that claim – the validity of which is disputed – if Bannon can reach an agreement on the terms of an appearance before the panel. The letter was described by three people familiar with it, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the matter.

Some advisers tried to dissuade Trump from signing the letter.

Bannon was charged with contempt of Congress in November 2021 for refusing to comply with the subpoena. A trial on those charges is scheduled to begin July 18, although Bannon has attempted to delay the trial.

The committee has argued that claims for executive privileges for Bannon, who was a private citizen as of January 6, 2021, are not valid. The committee has also said that Bannon, an outspoken advocate of false claims that the 2020 election was stolen, had to respond to the subpoena in some way – citing privileges on a question-by-question basis rather than refusing to do so , to answer.

“Even if your client had been a senior adviser to the President during the period covered by the contemplated testimony, which he most certainly was not, the kind of immunity you are proposing from Mr Trump is not legal to him permitted to assert,” Chairman Bennie G. Thompson (D-Miss.) wrote to Bannon’s attorney in October.

The administration has declined to press contempt charges against other former Trump aides who also invoke executive privilege, including former chief of staff Mark Meadows and former adviser Dan Scavino.

An attorney for Bannon and a spokesman for Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Since the bombshell testimony of Cassidy Hutchinson, a former top adviser to Meadows, several Republicans have come forward to work with the House Select Committee and more are expected to come forward, according to people familiar with the investigation who spoke on condition, because of anonymity the sensitivity of the matter.

The live and video recordings in the anti-Trump committee case so far have painted a detailed picture Image of the former president’s efforts to remain in power at all costs. Those public hearings could now continue through August and beyond as investigators gather more evidence and new testimonies, people familiar with the investigation added.

On Friday, former White House Attorney Pat Cipollone appeared in camera for an eight-hour, transcribed interview with investigators to discuss his role in trying to thwart Trump’s attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 election.

Cipollone may have provided the committee with answers to crucial questions that could confirm previous statements or provide new evidence of what he may have seen in the lead up to Jan. 6 and on the day of the White House attack.

“Mr. Cipollone appeared voluntarily and answered a number of questions,” said Committee member Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.). “He did not contradict the statements of other witnesses, and I think we learned a few things, which we will present in the coming hearings. It’s been a busy day for everyone involved. … But it was worth it.”

Lofgren described Cipollone in his statement as “cautious” and “sincere,” adding that new information and “additional insight into the actual day” of Jan. 6 was gathered.

Hutchinson’s testimony identified Cipollone as key witness to possible criminal activity in Trump’s White House.

Hutchinson testified that on the morning of January 6, Cipollone spoke up with an urgent request, “something along the lines of, ‘Please make sure we don’t go up to the Capitol, Cassidy. keep in touch with me We’ll be charged with every crime imaginable if we get this movement going.’”

She also testified that when the violence erupted in the Capitol, Cipollone demanded that he and Meadows speak to Trump to intervene and try to stop the violence. When Meadows told Cipollone that Trump didn’t want to do anything, Cipollone replied that “something has to be done or people are going to die, the blood is going to be on your damn hands,” according to Hutchinson’s retelling of Interaction.

Stewart Rhodes, the leader of the far-right militia group Oath Keepers, offered to appear before the House Committee on Friday, his attorney Lee Bright confirmed.

The committee did not respond to the offer. Rhodes requested that his testimony be conducted under certain conditions: an open forum, recorded from a location other than the prison where he is currently being held, and unedited. Bright said his client is willing to speak about Oath Keeper’s activities during this time of the last election and on January 6, 2021.

Isaac Arnsdorf and Rosalind S. Helderman contributed to this report.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2022/07/08/bannon-executive-privilege-trump-january-6/ Trump is considering waiving executive privileges for Steve Bannon

Dustin Huang

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