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U.S. House to vote on contempt charge against ex-Trump chief of staff Meadows -Breaking


© Reuters. U.S. White House Chief Staff Mark Meadows is present at the confirmation hearing for Judge Amy Coney Barrett, U.S. Supreme Court nominee, on Capitol Hill, Washington, D.C., U.S., 13 October 2020. Drew Angerer/Pool via REUTERS/Files

By Patricia Zengerle

WASHINGTON (Reuters] – On Tuesday, the U.S. House of Representatives plans to vote whether to bring criminal contempt of Congress against Mark Meadows. Meadows, Donald Trump’s chief of staff was accused of refusing to cooperate during a congressional inquiry into the January 6 Capitol attack.

On Monday night, the Select Committee that investigated the attack unanimously voted to approve the report of the House recommending that Meadows be charged with contempt of Congress. Meadows was a member before joining Trump’s Republican administration.

Vice chair Liz Cheney (Republican Representative Liz Cheney) read panicked messages from Republicans, and other people, begging Meadows to call Trump and urge him to come out publicly. These texts emerged during an investigation by the Select Committee.

Trump Jr. said, “He has to immediately condemn this stupidity.” Trump Jr., Trump’s youngest son said in one text: “We need an Oval Office Address.” Other texts showed conservative media hosts making similar pleas to Meadows in private, before playing down violence on air.

Cheney stated that “The American people should know the entire process that Donald Trump, his team and campaign took to try to alter the outcome of the election.”

Trump, during a rally Jan. 6, claimed his fall to Democratic President Joe Biden in November 2020 was the result widespread fraud and encouraged his supporters to march at the Capitol while Congress met to confirm Biden’s victory. Biden was inaugurated on January 20.

On the morning of the riot four people were killed and one Capitol officer was injured while protecting Congress. Hundreds upon hundreds of police officers were hurt during Trump supporters’ multi-hour attack. Since then, four officers took their own lives.

On Tuesday, the House Rules Committee voted 8-4 in favor of contempt resolution. Republicans voted no. The House Rules Committee voted 8-4 on Tuesday in favor of the contempt resolution, with Republicans voting no. This opened the door for consideration later by the Democratic-led House. The House could approve this resolution and send it to the Department of Justice for consideration.

This charge can lead to up to one year imprisonment.


Republican Representative Tom Cole (the Rules panel’s top Republican) argued against a contempt recommendation. This was despite Trump’s lawsuits, Meadows, which argued Trump’s communications should be protected under executive privilege. The Rules panel also stated that the committee subpoenas are too expansive.

Cole declared, “Today’s act is wildly premature.”

Jim McGovern of the Democratic Rules Committee stated, “Everybody was endangered at the Capitol campus,” in the worst attack on the U.S. Government since the War of 1812.

George Terwilliger (the attorney for Meadows) stated in Tuesday’s statement that Meadows had continued to cooperate.

Terwilliger explained that Terwilliger maintained repeatedly that he was not compelled to testify as the ex-chief of staff and that he, as a witness, is not authorized to waive executive privilege as claimed by former presidents.

Last week, Trump was denied a request by a federal appels court to withhold documents due to executive privilege. The court noted that Biden as President has authorized the release of those documents.

“Both branches agree that there is a unique legislative need for these documents and that they are directly relevant to the Committee’s inquiry into an attack on the legislative branch and its constitutional role in the peaceful transfer of power,” the court said.

Meadows may be the third Trump associate facing a criminal contempt case. On the House’s instruction, the Justice Department has filed similar charges against Trump’s former chief strategist Steve Bannon. Jeffrey Clark is the former Justice Department official being considered by Congress for a similar case.

At the Rules Committee meeting, Cheney stated that Trump wanted Clark to be appointed U.S. Attorney-General.