Politics

House Jan. 6 probe seeks information from Rep. Jim Jordan about his contact with Trump

Key Points
  • The House committee investigating the deadly Capitol riot has asked for a meeting with Republican Rep. Jim Jordan to discuss his communications with then-President Donald Trump on Jan. 6.
  • Select committee Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., wrote in a letter that investigators want to ask Jordan about "possibly multiple communications" he had with Trump on the day of the invasion.
  • It was recently revealed that Jordan sent then-chief of staff Mark Meadows a legally dubious text arguing that Vice President Mike Pence should reject Electoral College votes on Jan. 6 as Congress confirmed President Joe Biden's victory.
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House Jan. 6th committee asks GOP Rep. Jim Jordan for information

The House committee investigating the deadly Capitol riot asked Wednesday for a meeting with Republican Rep. Jim Jordan to discuss his communications with then-President Donald Trump on Jan. 6.

In a letter to Jordan, select committee Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said, "We understand that you had at least one and possibly multiple communications with President Trump on January 6th. We would like to discuss each such communication with you in detail."

A spokesman for Jordan did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Jordan, a staunch Trump ally, is the second lawmaker the panel has tapped to cooperate with its probe of the invasion. Hundreds of Trump's supporters stormed the Capitol and temporarily stopped Congress from confirming President Joe Biden's Electoral College victory.

Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa., said Tuesday he would refuse to cooperate with the investigators.

Jordan has given unclear answers about when, and how many times, he spoke with Trump on the day of the riot.

"Of course I talked to the president" on Jan. 6, Jordan told the House Rules Committee in October. "I talked to him that day. I've been clear about that. I don't recall the number of times, but it's not about me. I know you want to make it about that."

The rules panel questioned Jordan after he argued that Congress should not hold Trump ally Steve Bannon in contempt for defying a subpoena issued by the Jan. 6 committee. The House later found Bannon in contempt and referred him to the Department of Justice for criminal prosecution.

He was indicted on two counts of criminal contempt, and has pleaded not guilty.

Earlier this month, the House held Trump's former chief of staff Mark Meadows in contempt of Congress for his refusal to sit for a deposition in accordance with a subpoena from the panel. Meadows has sued the committee to invalidate the subpoena.

After Perry said he would not comply with the Jan. 6 probe, a spokesperson for the committee said investigators would seek information "using other tools."

It was revealed last week that Jordan, prior to Jan. 6, sent then-chief of staff Meadows a legally dubious text arguing that Vice President Mike Pence should reject Electoral College votes while presiding over Congress' confirmation of Biden's victory over Trump.

Pence refused to try to unilaterally invalidate any state's electoral votes, stoking the fury of Trump and many of the president's allies who pressured him to challenge the results.

In is letter to Jordan, Thompson said the committee wants to ask the Ohio lawmaker about any talks he had with Trump's legal team, his White House personnel or "others involved in organizing or planning the actions and strategies for January 6th."

Thompson also noted, "Public reporting suggests that you may also have information about meetings with White House officials and the then-President in November and December 2020, and early-January 2021, about strategies for overturning the results of the 2020 election."

"We would also like to ask you about any discussions involving the possibility of presidential pardons for individuals involved in any aspect of January 6th or the planning for January 6th," Thompson wrote.

Thompson's committee is tasked with investigating the facts, circumstances and causes of the Jan. 6 invasion. It includes seven Democrats and two Republicans — Vice Chair Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois — both of whom voted to impeach Trump on a charge of "incitement of insurrection."

The select committee was created by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., after Senate Republicans voted down a bill to create a "9/11-style" commission to investigate the riot. Republican and Democratic leaders each would have been able to appoint half the members on that commission.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., selected Jordan as one of his five picks for the Pelosi-crafted select committee. But Pelosi objected to Jordan and Rep. Jim Banks, R-Ind., joining the panel, calling them "ridiculous" choices in light of their past remarks and actions related to Jan. 6.

McCarthy responded by pulling all five of his picks for the panel.

House Republicans last spring ousted Cheney from her role in GOP leadership after she refused to stop criticizing Trump for spreading lies about the 2020 election.

Cheney defended Pelosi's decision to reject Jordan and Banks, saying at the time that one of them "may well be a material witness to events that led to" the invasion.