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U.S. House Jan. 6 panel subpoenas more former Trump officials

The Office of the Special Counsel said in a report that 13 Trump administration officials illegally campaigned for the former presidents reelection while in office, violating a law known as the Hatch Act thats designed to forbid this kind of abuse of public offices.

The U.S. House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot issued another round of subpoenas to 10 former officials in the administration of former President Donald Trump on Tuesday, the same day a government watchdog agency published a report saying 13 officials of the administration campaigned illegally for Trump's reelection.

The ex-officials being subpoenaed include former White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, former Senior Adviser to the President Stephen Miller, former White House Personnel Director John McEntee, former Deputy Chief of Staff Christopher Liddell, and ex-Vice President Mike Pence's national security advisor Keith Kellogg.

The other subpoena recipients are Nicholas Luna, who served as personal assistant to Trump; Cassidy Hutchinson, who was the former president's special assistant for legislative affairs; Kenneth Klukowski, former senior counsel to Assistant Attorney General Former U.S. National Security Adviser Michael Flynn leaves the federal court following his plea hearing in Washington D.C., the United States, on Dec. 1, 2017. (Xinhua/Ting Shen) Jeffrey Clark; Benjamin Williamson, who served as senior adviser to White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows; and Molly Michael, who served as Oval Office operations coordinator.



"As a White House Press Secretary you made multiple public statements from the White House and elsewhere about purported fraud in the November 2020 election, which individuals who attacked the U.S. Capitol echoed on Jan. 6," the committee wrote in its subpoena to McEnany.

The subpoena said that in a press conference after the 2020 presidential election, the press secretary "claimed that there were 'very real claims' of fraud that the former President's reelection campaign was pursuing, and said that mail-in voting was something that 'we have identified as being particularly prone to fraud.'

"The subpoena to Miller claimed that he and others in the team "prepared former President Trump's remarks for the rally on the Ellipse on Jan. 6, you were at the White House that day, and you were with Trump when he spoke at the 'Stop the Steal' rally."

"The Select Committee wants to learn every detail of what went on in the White House on January 6th and in the days beforehand. We need to know precisely what role the former President and his aides played in efforts to stop the counting of the electoral votes and if they were in touch with anyone outside the White House attempting to overturn the outcome of the election," Bennie Thompson, Democrat of Mississippi who chairs the panel, said in a statement.

Tuesday's subpoenas came following those issued Monday to six associates of Trump, including manager of his 2020 reelection campaign Bill Stepien, senior adviser to the campaign Jason Miller, former national security adviser Michael Flynn, among others.

Also on Tuesday, the Office of the Special Counsel, a government watchdog agency, said in a report that 13 Trump administration officials illegally campaigned for the former president's reelection while in office, violating a law known as the Hatch Act that's designed to forbid this kind of abuse of public offices.

Former White House Senior Advisor Jared Kushner (C) leaves after testifying at a closed-door hearing before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C., the United States, on July 24, 2017. (Xinhua/Ting Shen)

Those former officials included Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, former National Security Advisor Robert O'Brien, former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, former Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf and others.

"Senior Trump administration officials chose to use their official authority not for the legitimate functions of the government, but to promote the reelection of President Trump in violation of the law," the report concluded based on a nearly yearlong investigation.

Previously, the Jan. 6 committee has demanded documents and testimony from several other Trump advisers. Among them was one of Trump's staunchest allies, Steve Bannon, whom the House voted last month to hold in criminal contempt of Congress after he refused to comply with his subpoena.

Others facing subpoenas are Meadows as well as administration aides Kashyap Patel and Dan Scavino. They were reportedly "engaging" with the investigators.

Trump has been fighting the probe in court, claiming to insert his executive privileges to shield some of the records from Congress. President Joe Biden has refused to grant Trump those privileges in the context of the probe, saying it would otherwise not be in the best interest of the nation.  

Published : November 10, 2021

By : Xinhua