A United States Congressional Committee investigating the deadly 6th January attack on the US Capitol voted unanimously on Oct. 19 to hold Trump aide Steve Bannon in contempt of the United States Congress after Bannon refused a witness summon seeking testimony and documents.
The nine-member committee voted late Tuesday to send a report recommending contempt charges to the entire House. If the full chamber approved it, the matter would then be referred to the US Justice Department to choose whether to pursue charges. Steny Hoyer, House Majority Leader, said a full US House vote would come on 21st October.
Bennie Thompson, Chair of the House Jan. 6 Committee, said in the meeting that their goal is simple – they want Steve Bannon to answer their queries. They want him to turn over whatever he possesses that’s relevant to the committee’s inquiry. The problem is in front of their ability to do their job.
BREAKING: The U.S. House of Representatives committee probing the Jan. 6 Capitol attack unanimously approved a report recommending contempt-of-Congress charges against former Trump aide Steve Bannon pic.twitter.com/Hi8x6T0Glg
— Reuters (@Reuters) October 20, 2021
The two GOP and seven Democratic members of the US House Select Committee approved a report recommending the criminal charge by 9/0 voting, calling it shocking that ex-White House aide refused to comply with a summons for testimony and documents.
Fine and Imprisonment
One of the only two GOPs on the Committee, Rep. Liz Cheney, said Mr. Bannon and Donald Trump’s privilege arguments proposed the ex-US President was himself involved in the preparation and execution of the Jan. 6 events. Moreover, Cheney said that they’d get to the root cause.
The United States Attorney’s Office for District of Columbia said in a statement that if the U.S. House certifies a criminal contempt reference, the Justice Department, as with all criminal referrals, would evaluate the matter based on the realities and the law, consistent with the “Principles of Federal Prosecution.”
After the American leader Joe Biden said recently that the Department of Justice should prosecute Mr. Bannon, Jen Psaki, White House Press Secretary, attempted to distance the “Executive Mansion” from that action, telling the media on 18th October that Mr. Biden anticipates it is an independent determination that the US Justice Department should make. Moreover, that could take months, if not years, to prosecute, resulting in a penalty of nearly 0.1M dollars and up to 1-year imprisonment.
Steve Bannon’s Attorney Robert Costello told members of the committee that his client wouldn’t collaborate with the inquiry given Mr. Trump’s executive privilege worries or without a court order to act so.
Over 670 people have been charged with taking part in the Capitol riot, the worst attack on the American government since the 1812 War. In addition, the House Select Committee has issued nineteen subpoenas.