With the pace of the modern news cycle, it can be difficult to recall things that happened last week, let alone more than eight months ago. But one thing you probably remember from January 2020 is that Donald Trump, the then president of the United States, sicced a violent mob on the Capitol in an attempt to overturn the results of a free and fair election. He did this because he was mad that Joe Biden had beaten him, and his attempts to get Mike Pence to block the certification of Biden’s win, in addition to numerous lawsuits, had been unsuccessful. Other details of that day include Trump continuing to try to convince Senate allies to blow up the certification process even after it was clear that many people’s lives were in danger, doing virtually nothing to stop the violence, and, as Mitch McConnell put it, citing reports, “happily” watching the chaos unfold on TV. Later, as the violence continued, Trump sent his last tweets ever, justifying the mob’s actions, and urging everyone to “remember this day forever” like it was a college graduation and not an insurrection.
And those are just the things we know Trump did that day! What else did he get up to in his quest to secure a second term? That’s unclear, but the very idea of the public finding out apparently has the guy in an extreme tizzy, so presumably it’s extra bad.
Per The Washington Post:
So, for one thing, we’re pretty sure Trump has never once in his life acted outside his own self-interest. For another, typically when he goes to great lengths to keep information under wraps, it’s not because it makes him look better. Anyway, about that whole “executive privilege” business? It’s sort of hard to claim it when you’re no longer in charge of the executive branch, unless you’re claiming executive privilege over the Mar-a-Lago omelet station.
As noted by the Post, committee chairman Bennie Thompson said this week that his panel will be issuing subpoenas to witnesses and organizations soon, while the National Archive has already identified hundreds of pages of documents from the Trump White House that are relevant to the investigation. As required by statute, the information is being turned over to the Biden White House and Trump‘s lawyers for review, per the Post. The committee had requested “all documents and communications within the White House on January 6, 2021, relating in any way” to the events of the day, including call logs, as well as schedules and meetings for Ivanka Trump, Eric Trump, Donald Trump Jr., Melania Trump, Jared Kushner, and other advisers, including Rudy Giuliani. According to the Post, the committee has “focused, in part, on seeking information about whether the Trump White House and members of Congress played any role in encouraging the demonstrations, which interrupted the constitutionally mandated certification of electoral votes and unleashed a series of violent confrontations with the U.S. Capitol Police.… Documents and testimony could show whether White House officials and members of Congress encouraged or supported those actions, congressional staffers said.”
While Trump has characteristically flipped out over the information being revealed, experts say he may have little recourse if Biden decides to hand them over. “The law we have is not favorable to the former president,” Bob Bauer, who served as White House counsel under Barack Obama, told the Post. “The executive privilege stonewalling that Trump used while he was in office won’t work anymore,” said Norm Eisen, a former Obama appointee.
In response to questions about White House deliberations concerning what information to release, Biden spokesman Mike Gwin told the Post that Biden views the attack on the Capitol as “a dark stain on our country’s history” and is “deeply committed to ensuring that something like that can never happen again, and he supports a thorough investigation.”
To be fair, she had her hands full lying to the American public, so