Fox News has reported that many of those suspected of participating in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot have been held in awful conditions. If a recent judicial ruling stands, then many of them could end up spending quite a bit more time behind bars.
According to The Hill, U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta declared on Monday that prosecutors can proceed with charges of obstructing an official proceeding against the former president’s supporters who were at the Capitol on that day.
“Their alleged conduct was no mere political protest or trespass,” the Obama-appointed judge said, becoming the third federal judge to reject a First Amendment challenge to the charge.
“If proven, their conduct crossed the line to criminal conduct: they ‘corruptly’ conspired to, and did, ‘obstruct, influence, and impede an official proceeding,'” he wrote.
The Hill noted that in addition to charging Trump supporters with obstruction of an official proceeding, some have suggested the former president could himself be charged.
One person who has alluded to the possibility is Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney (R), a long-time critic of the 45th president. She currently serves as vice-chair on a House select committee tasked with investigating the events of Jan. 6.
“Did Donald Trump, through action or inaction, corruptly seek to obstruct or impede Congress’s official proceeding to count electoral votes?” Cheney asked last week.
Fellow anti-Trump GOP Rep. Adam Kinzinger (IL) hasn’t ruled out the possibility either, telling CNN host Jake Tapper that the Jan. 6 committee is “looking” at possible charges.
“No one is above the law”
“I’m not ready to go there yet,” Kinzinger said according to The Hill. “But I sure tell you I have a lot of questions about what the president was up to.”
“And I think we will, by the end of our investigation and by the time our report is out, have a pretty good idea,” Kinzinger continued. “Nobody, Jake, is above the law.”
“Nobody,” the Illinois congressman stressed. “Not the president — he’s not a king — not former presidents, they aren’t former kings. Nobody is above the law.”
“And if the president knowingly allowed what happened on Jan. 6 to happen, and, in fact, was giddy about it, and that violates a criminal statute, he needs to be held accountable for that.”