The January 6th committee is officially giving up on forcing President Trump to testify, bringing to an anti-climactic finish a televised show trial that had captivated the left.
January 6th committee chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS) informed Trump’s lawyers that his cooperation with a subpoena was no longer needed as the committee prepares to end its partisan investigation.
January 6th committee throws in the towel
The committee issued the subpoena just before the midterm elections, but Trump sued to block it, saying it violated the separation of powers.
In a letter, Thompson noted the committee “has concluded its hearings, released its final report and will very soon reach its end.”
“In light of the imminent end of our investigation, the Select Committee can no longer pursue the specific information covered by the subpoena,” Thompson wrote.
“Therefore, through this letter, I hereby formally withdraw the subpoena issued to former President Trump, and notify you that he is no longer obligated to comply or produce records in response to said subpoena,” Thompson added. “We appreciate your engagement with the Select Committee on this matter.”
Trump mocked the “Unselect Committee” in a Truth Social Post, declaring, “the Subpoena is DEAD!”
The subpoena had excited the liberal base, briefly raising the prospect of a sensational finale in a dramatic, made-for-TV presentation that captivated Democrats and the establishment media. Instead, the committee’s lengthy, bombastic report landed with a thud just a few days before Christmas.
The report recommended that Trump be barred from seeking public office again and that the Biden Justice Department bring criminal charges against him for “insurrection.”
Critics on the right have lambasted the report as partisan and incomplete. Notable omissions include the role of Ray Epps, who was seen encouraging protesters to go into the Capitol the day before the riot.
The committee was controversial from the start, after Democrats rejected the GOP’s picks, leaving just two anti-Trump Republicans to serve as token opposition. From there, the committee made an aggressive pursuit of its targets, often sidestepping due process concerns with sweeping subpoenas.
With the failure of the committee’s Trump subpoena, Democrats will have to stay tuned for the next chapter of the rolling “witch hunt,” which appears to be far from over.
Right on cue, the committee is handing off its work to the Biden Justice Department to continue its criminal investigation of Trump, who is now a 2024 presidential candidate.