Department Of Justice Rejects Steve Bannon’s Nonsense In Court

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Late last week, as his trial approached, Trump goon Steve Bannon filed another request for the dismissal of the contempt of Congress case against him, which is tied to past refusals by the former Trump adviser to cooperate with the House panel investigating the Capitol riot. In a response to that new request, the Justice Department tore into Bannon’s arguments.

In short, Bannon tied his new request to the block imposed by the court on his side obtaining testimony from certain members of Congress, but as the Justice Department lays out the situation, Bannon and his defense have flatly failed to demonstrate that targeted members of Congress possess information that would be relevant at his criminal trial. Although federal Judge Carl Nichols, who is handling Bannon’s trial, already ruled against subpoenaing Nancy Pelosi and riot investigation committee members, Bannon’s side appeared to be hoping to question certain House members in relation to some of the familiar institutional complaints that Trump allies have raised against the riot panel. Specifically, Bannon’s arguments were partly based in ideas Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) wasn’t the legitimate “ranking member” for the committee and that it as a whole lacked necessary legitimacy.

“But as set forth above, the Court has already determined that the Defendant’s waived grievances regarding the rules are not relevant in this trial,” the Justice Department filing stated, in reference to Bannon’s arguments about whether the panel abides by relevant institutional rules. The idea would presumably be that Bannon didn’t even need to comply with the committee’s investigation since it’s supposedly illegitimately constituted — although the panel’s underlying legitimacy has been repeatedly upheld by federal judges. The reason there’s no involvement by House GOP leadership in the committee — providing some of the backdrop for arguments about its adherence to relevant standards — is because Kevin McCarthy punitively withdrew from the process after Nancy Pelosi rejected a couple of his selections for seats on the panel.

In other words, Bannon is profoundly misrepresenting what’s at issue. “But the Defendant’s motion—which recycles a large amount of irrelevant material from his failed opposition to the House of Representative’s motion to quash and which displays disregard for the Court’s controlling orders in this case regarding his available defenses—fails to articulate any testimony he seeks from these individuals that is relevant in his trial, much less that would be exculpatory or non-cumulative. His motion should be denied,” the new Justice Department filing states of Bannon’s attempt to get his charges dismissed. The so-called motion to quash from the House of Representatives targeted trial subpoenas issued by Bannon’s side to an array of Congressional figures, who were those witnesses Bannon sought.

Bannon “recycles much of his failed opposition to the House of Representatives’ motion to quash, without acknowledging the Court’s rulings, which foreclose admission of the evidence he claims the House witnesses possess,” that federal filing states, explaining the situation slightly differently. Bannon — who could face jail-time if convicted — already lost one attempt to get the case against him dismissed, and he also lost in efforts to get his trial delayed. Jury selection was set to begin on Monday.