Secret Trump Records Set To Be Obtained By Jan. 6 Committee

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The National Archives was set to submit a selection of records from Trump’s administration to the House committee investigating the Capitol riot on Wednesday. Apparently, the Archives was planning on submitting to the committee four pages of materials that Trump claims to be covered by executive privilege. There are two additional pages connected to these items that the Justice Department determined to be similar enough to materials covered by an earlier court order to warrant keeping them from investigators, for now. Predictably, Trump’s side claims that the disputed pages shouldn’t be turned over, but as of Wednesday afternoon — hours before the Archives was set to send over the documents — the transfer seemed set to go through.

As summarized by reporter Zoe Tillman regarding the previous court order temporarily halting the release of certain materials to investigators, the Justice Department is “maintaining that the injunction clearly only applied to the first three tranches of docs, and that Trump had a chance to try to argue in court [regarding] the fourth tranche, and instead limited that effort to [the Supreme Court], which hasn’t acted yet.”

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), a member of the riot investigation committee, expressed optimism last month about the panel’s prospects for obtaining the Trump documents that they’re after (including more than just what was set to be delivered this week). As the Congressman put it:

‘Of course, we don’t know all that’s in there. But we have received cooperation from any number of witnesses, including, for a time, Mark Meadows, so we know some of what’s in the [National] Archives. And if the rest of what’s in the Archives is anything like what we’ve received already, it’s going to be very important for our committee. I’m confident we’ll get it. The question is just, how quickly will we get it. We are, when witnesses fail to cooperate, looking for other ways of getting the same information. And this is one very important source.’

Across the disputed records — including more than just what moved to the highest-profile spot this week, a court filing revealed that items include “daily presidential diaries, schedules, appointment information showing visitors to the White House, activity logs, call logs, and switchboard shift-change checklists showing calls” to Trump and Pence, notes from then-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, and more. The committee dropped its requests for certain items over concerns about the impact on national security from revealing them — not, as Trump claimed, because of worries about the Bidens facing similar investigations in the future. Meanwhile, riot investigators are planning to essentially lay out the case for the American people with a series of public hearings in the near future.