The House committee investigating the Capitol riot has now sent out a slew of records requests to an array of government agencies, going after documents from the Trump era that could reveal some of the Trump administration’s internal actions around the time of (or otherwise in relation to) the riot. In total, over half a dozen government agencies were targeted by the committee’s records requests this week, and ABC News adds that the requests “could also spark a lengthy legal battle with the former president and his attorneys,” but members of Congress involved with the committee — including both of the panel’s Republicans, Reps. Liz Cheney (Wyo.) and Adam Kinzinger (Ill.) — have indicated that they’re intent on uncovering the truth.
The Jan 6 committee is seeking all White House comms/docs on Jan 6 related whatsoever to:
All Trump's grown children except Tiffany
and many morehttps://t.co/7hm3p6ucT4
— Betsy Woodruff Swan (@woodruffbets) August 25, 2021
The government agencies receiving records requests include the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, Justice, and Interior; the FBI; the National Archives; and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.
The document requests are wide-ranging — for instance, the riot investigation committee asked the Defense Department to provide “[all] documents and communications concerning possible attempts by President Donald Trump to remain in office after January 20, 2021,” along with documents apparently relating to the possible invocation of martial law, which certain Trump allies pushed amid the now ex-president’s desperate attempts to stay in office. Meanwhile, the panel has also asked the National Archives for “all documents and communications within the White House” related to Trump allies including Rudy Giuliani and former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn (the latter of whom who was one of those who suggested martial law). Others named include Trump’s adult children (excluding Tiffany), Melania Trump, Jared Kushner, and more.
The incitement for the Capitol riot that Trump provided was not at all limited to the speech that he delivered at an outdoor rally in D.C. shortly before the violence unfolded. For months, he promoted the lie that the presidential election had been somehow stolen for Joe Biden, and he also publicly touted January 6 as a day of action. The lie that the election was rigged inspired the riot. Trump utilized — or, in some instances, merely sought to utilize — the powers of the federal government to promote what turned out to be incitement to violence.
For instance, Trump pressured Jeffrey Rosen — who served as the acting Attorney General towards the conclusion of Trump’s tenure — to support his election fraud claims. Through an assistant, Trump sent Rosen a draft version of a brief that he wanted the Justice Department to file with the Supreme Court, claiming “that a handful of battleground states had used the pandemic to make unconstitutional changes to their election laws that affected the election outcome,” as The New York Times explains. Trump has also been reported more directly by The Wall Street Journal to have hoped for the Justice Department to ask the Supreme Court to legally nullify the presidential election outcome.
In addition to the months-long campaign of incitement by the ex-president, it’s also clear that Trump sought to corruptly use federal powers to advance his agenda of staying in power. He essentially threatened to overturn the very democratic process itself in the United States — and details surrounding these endeavors are now what the riot investigation committee is hoping to obtain.