Trump Sues To Keep Presidential Records From Jan. 6 Committee Citing Executive Privilege
Former President Donald Trump is suing the House select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection in an effort to keep records from his presidency confidential.
The committee has been trying to obtain the records as part of its probe into the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. Trump’s lawsuit alleges that this request “is unprecedented in [its] breadth and scope and [is] untethered from any legitimate legislative purpose.”
Trump is claiming in his lawsuit that the Presidential Records Act is unconstitutional if it is “read so broadly as to allow an incumbent President unfettered discretion to waive the previous President’s executive privilege, mere months following an administration change.”
The lawsuit also claims that the House’s investigation is an attempt to appease President Joe Biden’s political allies. “Polling shows Biden’s approval cratering and 2022 slipping out of Democrats’ grasp – no wonder the Democrats and the media want to distract America from: The surrender in Afghanistan, skyrocketing inflation, a border crisis, crippling COVID mandates, and a stalled legislative agenda,” said Trump spokesperson Taylor Budowich.
Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-Mississippi) and Vice-Chair Liz Cheney (R-Wyoming) issued a joint statement about the lawsuit. “The former President’s clear objective is to stop the Select Committee from getting to the facts about January 6th and his lawsuit is nothing more than an attempt to delay and obstruct our probe,” they wrote. “Precedent and law are on our side.”
Thompson and Cheney vowed to “fight the former President’s attempt to obstruct our investigation while we continue to push ahead successfully with our probe on a number of other fronts.”
The White House has also responded to the Trump lawsuit, saying in a statement on Monday that the former president “abused the office of the presidency and attempted to subvert a peaceful transfer of power.”
“The former president’s actions represented a unique – and existential – threat to our democracy that can’t be swept under the rug. As President Biden determined, the constitutional protections of executive privilege should not be used to shield information that reflects a clear and apparent effort to subvert the Constitution itself,” said White House spokesman Mike Gwin.