As the House committee investigating January 6 winds down its work with this Congress, members publicly voted on Monday to refer Donald Trump and several prominent allies of his to the Justice Department for prosecution.
The move is essentially a formal recommendation for action by prosecutors — a recommendation that is non-binding. Outside the Justice Department, committee investigators’ decision means renewed scrutiny is returning to exactly what Trump did after the 2020 presidential election and leading up to the attack on the Capitol. Trump recently confirmed his expected ambition to win the Republican presidential nomination for 2024, and the committee’s work reminds Americans what Donald’s platform actually represents. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), a committee member, pushed the prospect of Trump never becoming president again in a brief statement posted to his official Twitter account.
“Our work on the @January6thCmte has led us to criminally refer Donald Trump to DOJ,” he said. “We now turn to the criminal justice system to ensure Justice under the law. The American people can ensure he’s never elected again.” Kinzinger, like Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), who is the other Republican on the riot panel, is exiting Congressional service with the close of this Congress. In opening remarks at the proceedings where members voted for referring Trump for prosecution, Cheney also spoke against the idea of Donald ever reclaiming the White House — or, she said, any other government service post. “In addition to being unlawful as described in our report, this was an utter moral failure and a clear dereliction of duty,” Cheney said in a discussion of Trump’s actions. “No man who would behave that way at that moment in time can ever serve in any position of authority in our nation again. He is unfit for any office.”
Our work on the @January6thCmte has led us to criminally refer Donald Trump to DOJ. We now turn to the criminal justice system to ensure Justice under the law. The American people can ensure he’s never elected again.
— Adam Kinzinger (@RepKinzinger) December 19, 2022
The former president has reacted with predictable anger, complaining in a post on Truth Social (his social media site) about at least potentially facing double jeopardy because of the impeachment case that followed the Capitol riot — but impeachment doesn’t constitute a criminal case, meaning there wouldn’t be anything substantively “double” about new charges, and the committee didn’t charge Trump. They just recommended prosecutors do so.