Former President Donald Trump has penned a letter to the January 6 committee allowing his former White House strategist Steve Bannon to testify.
Bannon, worked for Trump for 7 months in 2017, and was indicted in November by a federal grand jury. Bannon was charged with two counts of criminal contempt of Congress.
Trump cited reasons such as Bannon being treated “unfairly” and having to “spend vast amounts of money on legal fees” as reasons for his decision.
“I will waive Executive Privilege for you, which allows for you to go in and testify truthfully and fairly, as per the request of the Unselect Committee of political Thugs and Hacks, who have allowed no Due Process, no Cross-Examination, and no real Republican members or witnesses to be present or interviewed. It is a partisan Kangaroo Court,” the letter says, according to NBC News.
Robert Costello, Steve Bannon’s lawyer, penned a separate letter noting that “Trump has decided that it would be in the best interests of the American people to waive executive privilege for Stephen K. Bannon, to allow Mr. Bannon to comply with the subpoena issued by your Committee. Mr. Bannon is willing to, and indeed prefers, to testify at your public hearing.”
January 6 committee member Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) spoke to Jake Tapper from CNN regarding Bannon’s letter. Lofgren said the panel hadn’t yet had a chance to discuss Bannon’s letter in depth, but “I expect that we will be hearing from him and there are many questions that we have for him.”
Lofgren went onto say that Bannon’s testimony is unlikely to be shown live. “This goes on for hour after hour after hour. We want to get all our questions answered, and you can’t do that in a live format,” she said.
Steve Bannon is scheduled to go on trial on 18 July and prosecutors said that his “last minute” decision to testify will not have any bearing on the charges against him.
“The Defendant’s last-minute efforts to testify almost nine months after his default — he has still made no effort to produce records, are irrelevant to whether he willfully refused to comply in October 2021 with the Select Committee’s subpoena,” the prosecutors said. “The criminal contempt statute is not intended to procure compliance; it is intended to punish past noncompliance.”
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: BLOOMBERG
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