Judge Orders Trump Lawyer To Comply With Jan 6 Subpoena


Conservative attorney John Eastman has been ordered by a California judge to comply with a subpoena from the House committee investigating the Capitol riot for his records. Eastman worked on then-President Donald Trump’s behalf around the time of last January’s attack on the Capitol by Trump supporters, and it’s Eastman who — with Trump’s support — formally promoted a now-infamous plan for then-Vice President Mike Pence to reject Biden’s wins from certain states amid the Congressional proceedings to certify the presidential election outcome. Pence, who as the vice president presided over the certification proceedings, did not actually possess such a legally recognized power.

The specific subpoena involving Eastman that has most recently been at issue went out to Chapman University, where he used to work. During court proceedings dealing with the matter, California-based federal Judge David Carter got Eastman’s lawyer, Charles Burnham, to admit to Eastman having worked on Trump’s behalf at certain key points. As explained by CNN, Carter “asked Eastman’s team who his client was during each of the moments the House sought information about in their letter to Eastman announcing his subpoena. Eastman had been working for his client, Trump, his lawyer said in court to nearly every question.” Carter also secured confirmations that Eastman was working on Trump’s behalf at specific junctures including a briefing of hundreds of state legislators and a pre-January 6 meeting with Trump and Pence regarding deliberations over trying to block Biden’s win from getting confirmed by Congress.

Carter, the judge handling this matter after Eastman brought a lawsuit meant to block the House committee’s subpoena to Chapman University, ordered the school to provide Eastman’s team with his nearly 19,000 emails by this Tuesday, allowing for the conservative lawyer to make privilege claims over items that he might believe should be shielded. After that point, some third party will examine the materials and either accept or reject Eastman’s claims of attorney-client privilege. Carter is pushing for the process to unfold quickly; after the hearing, he included in an order regarding the issue that the Court “expects that the parties will work together with the urgency that this case requires.” Read more at this link.

The riot investigation committee has recently scored significant successes in their quest for key records. The U.S. Supreme Court recently rejected an attempt by former President Trump to keep hundreds of pages of records from his administration from being obtained by the committee. The Supreme Court’s order regarding this matter noted that “[because] the court of appeals concluded that President Trump’s claims would have failed even if he were the incumbent, his status as a former president necessarily made no difference to the court’s decision.” Trump had been claiming that certain records were protected by executive privilege, although President Joe Biden — who, as the current chief executive, had a say in the matter — had declined to go along with Trump’s sweeping claims.