Multiple GOP Staffers Flip & Cooperate With Jan. 6 Committee

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Multiple current and former staffers at the Republican National Committee (RNC) — the main national arm of the GOP — have testified to the House committee investigating the Capitol riot, according to a new POLITICO report. The identities of these individuals weren’t provided among initial details, although according to that report, panel investigators have honed in on the party’s digital and finance operations. One of the sources for the publication indicated most of those affiliated with the national GOP who’d testified to the riot panel were former staffers who’d been on the payroll during the 2020 election cycle, including the post-Election Day period leading up to the Capitol violence.

Committee members have gone after details including who exactly was behind messages from the GOP to supporters that hinged on false claims about the integrity of the last presidential election. Relatedly, the riot panel has subpoenaed the customer relationship management software company called Salesforce for information related to the work Republican Party officials completed through it. Although RNC chairwoman Ronna McDaniel testified to the riot committee, the Republican Party also filed a lawsuit in hopes of blocking the subpoena to Salesforce, but there’d yet to be a ruling on their claims as of Thursday.

Republicans claimed that committee investigators’ subpoena threatened to impede on the free speech rights of the party and its supporters, insisting that the subpoena “would only serve to chill the RNC’s and its supporters’ First Amendment rights, while providing their political opponents with an all-access pass to confidential RNC political strategies and the personal information of millions of its supporters.” According to investigators, the subpoena “has absolutely nothing to do with getting the private information of voters or donors.” Rather, it’s meant “to help investigators understand the impact of false, inflammatory messages in the weeks before January 6th, the flow of funds, & whether contributions were actually directed to the purpose indicated,” according to the committee. There’s no apparent indication that Republican Party staffers who testified to the committee — apart from McDaniel, although she’d be better described as a party official — had access to certain high-level data related to the party’s outreach and fundraising work completed in tandem with Salesforce. According to the Wednesday POLITICO report, U.S. District Court Judge Timothy Kelly indicated he’d rule this week on Republican claims regarding the panel’s subpoena for Salesforce.

Meanwhile, as previously reported here, after Mark Meadows sued the riot committee late last year to try and block subpoenas from investigators, the committee has now (besides other, intervening steps) filed a motion for summary judgment, seeking to get Meadows’s in-court obstruction stopped. Notably, investigators revealed in their push for the court to shut down Meadows’s claims that ex-Trump White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson told them that “people had brought information forward to [Meadows] that had indicated that there could be violence on the 6th.” In other words, Meadows could provide critical information about behind-the-scenes developments around Trump in relation to the violence. “The Select Committee’s filing today urges the Court to reject Mark Meadows’s baseless claims and put an end to his obstruction of our investigation. Mr. Meadows is hiding behind broad claims of executive privilege even though much of the information we’re seeking couldn’t possibly be covered by privilege and courts have rejected similar claims because the committee’s interest in getting to the truth is so compelling,” panel leaders Reps. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) and Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) said.