House recommends prosecuting two Trump aides for contempt of Congress

The request will be formally forwarded to the Department of Justice, which will decide whether or not to bring charges against Peter Navarro, a former economic adviser to Donald Trump, and Dan Scavino, who was an adviser responsible for social networks.

The resolution passed 220 to 203, along largely partisan lines. Unsurprisingly, only two Republicans, Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger, who both serve on the House Investigating Committee into the Capitol Storming, voted with the Democrats.

MM. Navarro and Scavino refused to collaborate in the investigation, invoking executive privilege, an argument echoing that invoked in court by Donald Trump, who thus hoped to dissuade his former collaborators from participating in the work of the committee.

In the event of any prosecution, they risk a one-year prison sentence and a fine of up to $100,000.

Only one Donald Trump aide, Steve Bannon, has so far been indicted by the Justice Department last November following a similar House vote.

The former adviser to Donald Trump, who also defied a subpoena and an order for the production of documents, pleaded not guilty.

However, the department has yet to rule on the House subpoena against the former president’s chief of staff, Mark Meadows, a situation that angers both the investigating committee and the Democratic camp.

During the debates preceding the vote on the resolution targeting Dan Scavino and Peter Navarro, the chairman of the special committee, Democrat Bennie Thomson, argued that the two men should be held accountable for their disregard for the law.

This kind of cynical behavior, as we investigate a violent insurgency, is simply despicable. This cannot last. Dan Scavino and Peter Navarro must be held accountable for their abuse of public trusthe argued.

Republicans, for their part, argued that the Democrats were playing a political game, accusing them, for example, ofattack american democracy trying to imprison their political opponents.

Autopsy of an Assault

The investigative committee, however, seeks to shed light on the invasion of the headquarters of Congress, on January 6, 2021, by hundreds of supporters of Donald Trump who were trying to prevent the validation by Congress of Joe Biden’s victory in the November presidential election.

Mr. Scavino is, among other things, suspected of having participated, with Donald Trump, in a discussion, on January 5, on how to convince members of Congress to refuse to certify the victory of Joe Biden.

According to the special committee, Mr. Navarro, for his part, took part in the maneuvers aimed at overturning the results of the 2020 election and even mentioned the support of the former president for these projects.

The committee has heard from more than 800 witnesses since it began its work last year, including, on Tuesday, Ivanka Trump, the former Republican president’s daughter and former adviser, and, last week, Jared Kushner, son-in-law. and former adviser to the former president.

Both appeared before the committee without being subpoenaed.

So far, almost all of the successive witnesses have appeared in camera. According to ABC News, the House select committee, whose final report is expected this fall, hopes to move to the public portion of the committee’s work in May.

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