House Votes To Hold Trump Advisers Navarro & Scavino In Contempt Of Congress
The House voted on Wednesday to hold former President Donald Trump advisers Dan Scavino and Peter Navarro in contempt of Congress for refusing to comply with subpoenas issued by the House select committee investigating last year’s January 6 Capitol attack.
The 220-203 vote was nearly split along party lines with only two Republicans, Reps. Liz Cheney (Wyoming) and Adam Kinzinger (Illinois), voicing support for a request to the Justice Department to prosecute Trump’s former deputy chief of staff and former trade adviser. Both Cheney and Kinzinger are also the two GOP members seated on the House select committee.
“To run into this kind of obstruction, this kind of cynical behavior, as we investigate a violent insurrection, is just despicable,” select committee Chairman Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson (Mississippi) said prior to the vote. “It can’t stand. Dan Scavino and Peter Navarro must be held accountable for their abuses of the public trust. They must be held accountable for their defiance of the law. They are in contempt of Congress, which is a crime.”
Scavino was among one of the first people subpoenaed by the committee because of his longtime close proximity to the former President. He was responsible for Trump’s social media strategy and was the monitor for multiple websites where Trump supporters discussed an attack before January 6.
Navarro was subpoenaed in February. He claimed executive privilege, saying that if Trump waived his executive privilege he “would be happy to comply” with the committee. However, Trump has never formally utilized executive privilege and President Joe Biden has said he would dismiss executive privilege over evidence relating to January 6.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-California) promised to ax the panel if the Republicans gained the majority in the House after the midterm election, calling the committee’s work “a disgusting betrayal of the Constitution.”
Cheney disagreed with her colleague.
“When you hear my colleagues make political, partisan attacks on the select committee, I hope all of us can remember some basic facts,” Cheney said.
“Through these interviews, we have learned that President Trump and his team were warned in advance, and repeatedly, that the efforts they undertook to overturn the 2020 election would violate the law and the Constitution,” Cheney added. “They were warned that January 6 could and likely would turn violent.”