The House Select Committee of Inquiry into the January 6 Capital Attack is facing a time crisis as investigators rush to combine the words and actions of former President Donald Trump on January 6, Republican Jamie Raskin, D.M., admitted Tuesday.
“We’re playing ‘Beat the Clock’ here against Trump’s inner circle, which they think could hinder our investigation,” Raskin told reporters.
The committee, which is expected to begin public hearings in May, is trying to finish interviewing dozens of witnesses next week.
Several senior officials in the Trump administration, including senior adviser Jared Kushner and Secretary of Defense Mark Asper, are expected to appear before the committee this week. Chris Hodgson, another senior aide to Vice President Mike Pence, was seen in the panel’s office for a personal statement Wednesday.
“We’re going to do everything we can to get everyone’s cooperation,” Raskin said.
That tick clock has an impact on how far investigators are willing to go to confirm witnesses and obtain documents.
Congress investigators are likely to hold talks with Vice President Mike Pence, Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani and former White House counsel Pat Cipolon in the wake of the committee’s hearing schedule and the self-imposed deadline for issuing a final report in the fall. .
Investigators also received a text message from conservative activist Ginny Thomas – the wife of Justice Clarence Thomas – about the results of a report that pressured then-Chief of Staff Mark Meadows to try to overturn the election results.
Committee members discussed whether to invite him to testify publicly, but did not publicly share how they would like to proceed.
They are also working to fill “several gaps” in White House telephone logs obtained by the committee, first reported by The Washington Post and CBS News, Republican Pete Aguilar, D-Calif. Said Tuesday.
Official records of Trump’s switchboard phone calls include more than a 7-hour interval of activity during the January 6 Capital riots, during which time multiple telephone conversations with GOP lawmakers were reported to have taken place using key cellphones. Helper
Schiff said the committee is working to determine what Trump was doing at the time.
Although Schiff has declined to go specifically, the committee has repeatedly submitted cellphone records of Trump associates and collaborators and issued requests for blanket protection on telecommunications, social media and email companies and platforms.
“We have multiple sources of information, both for the collection of records, as well as for the witnesses who appeared before the committee who described the activities of the president that day,” Schiff said. “We’re putting together a complete picture as much as possible, and not relying on a single source of information.”
Although some committee members and staff believe the panel should take more aggressive steps to try to enforce the subpnos, any potential legal disputes cannot be resolved before the end of the year, when Republicans can take control of the chamber.
On Monday, the panel recommended that Trump hold two full White House officials, Peter Navarro and Dan Scavino, in the House for contempt of Congress for ignoring subpoena for record and testimony. House Majority Leader Stanley Hoyer, D-Mo. The House said Wednesday it plans to vote on the issue next week.
Trump ally Steve Bannon was accused of disobeying the committee’s subpoena last November when the whole House voted to insult him. He has pleaded not guilty and his trial is not expected to begin until May.
Meadows was also held to contempt of the House in December, but the former chief of staff is still facing charges from the judiciary – leading some lawmakers to criticize the DOJ for failing to take action.
The committee made it clear in the court filing that it believes Trump violated the law in an attempt to overturn the 2020 election results. And while a federal judge wrote this week that Trump was “more than likely” to commit a crime during his tenure, the judiciary was not even close to charging – or even considering charging – the former president a felony.
“Attorney General Garland: Do your job so we can do ours,” Republican Elaine Luria, D-V, told a committee meeting Monday.
Benny Thompson, R-Miss, chairman of the committee, told reporters Tuesday that “as a committee, we want to take some authority, like every entity in the neighborhood.” “But obviously it’s out of our Bellywick.”
ABC News’ Lali Ibsa and Luke Barr contributed to this report.