Federal prosecutors have reportedly used a grand jury subpoena to obtain a duplicate set of the Trump White House records which the National Archives and Records Administration has been providing to the House January 6 select committee since last year.
The Independent has confirmed the existence of the subpoena which was first reported by the New York Times and was served on Nara this past May. According to a copy of the document viewed by the Times, it demanded that the archives provide prosecutors with “all materials, in whatever form” that had been produced in response to a subpoena issued last year by the select committee as part of its’ parallel investigation into the worst attack on the US Capitol since 1814.
Although former president Donald Trump attempted to block Nara from turning over records created during his presidency to the House panel, the Supreme Court in January rejected his appeal of two lower court decisions which held that Congress was entitled to the documents because the incumbent president, Joe Biden, had not chosen to invoke executive privilege to prevent their production.
Since that Supreme Court ruling, Nara has been providing documents to the panel on a rolling bases, including White House phone logs, copies of the “daily diary” that documented Mr Trump’s movements, calls, meetings and other daily activities, files from ex-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, former deputy White House counsel Pat Philbin, and ex-senior adviser Stephen Miller.
Other tranches of documents provided to the select committee include draft remarks for the speech Mr Trump delivered at the Ellipse on the day of the attack.
The subpoena was reportedly issued at the request of Thomas Windom, the senior federal prosecutor who is overseeing the Justice Department’s investigation into Mr Trump’s attempt to remain in office against the wishes of American voters, including a plan for the ex-president’s allies to submit fake documents to the Archives purporting to be electoral vote certificates for Mr Trump from states that were carried by Mr Biden in the 2020 election.
The fact that prosecutors have requested copies of the same documents obtained by the select committee is a strong indicator that the department is actively investigating whether Mr Trump’s schemes to remain in power broke US laws. It also suggests that Justice Department officials believe the documents obtained by the select committee could be used as evidence to prove that crimes were committed by Mr Trump and his allies as they strove to overturn his loss to Mr Biden.
The department has also issued subpoenas to several former Trump White House officials, including ex-White House lawyer Eric Herschmann and former Meadows aide Cassidy Hutchinson. Ms Hutchinson gave evidence before a grand jury investigating the January 6 attack shortly after she testified in an open hearing before the select committee on 28 June.