Source: New York Times
The storming of the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, will go down in American history as one of the country’s most notable security and intelligence failures. Spearheaded by a pro-Trump mob who faced off against the police, broke into the Capitol, and sent Congress members running for cover, the insurrection was followed by various social, political, and legal repercussions, including the second impeachment of the former president Donald Trump for his role in inciting the rioters, the resignation of many officials from his administration, and the start of a large-scale criminal investigation.
In June, the House of Representatives voted to establish a committee tasked to investigate the attack that served as a culmination of numerous attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 United States presidential election. This bicameral commission was initially set to look into the nitty-gritty of the Capitol riot during its immediate aftermath but failed to do so because of a filibuster from Republicans in the Senate. In particular, Mitch McConnell was primarily implicated in shooting down the creation of the 9/11-style commission. He reportedly delivered a sharp warning to his colleagues to follow his lead in opposing the bill during a closed-door meeting, a directive that was apparently observed when all but six Senate Republicans voted against the full accounting of January 6’s events.
With the House voting 220 to 190, the select committee started its proceedings, holding its first public hearing on July 27 and giving the floor to the officers who witnessed and experienced firsthand the violent events instigated by Trump’s supporters. Since then, it has also requested not only documents from government agencies and other relevant institutions but also began collecting telecommunications records of those involved.
This week, the January 6 committee subpoenaed eleven organizers responsible for leading the mob that surged into the Capitol, citing their alleged role in the riot and their interactions with Trump in the process. This move follows last week’s issuance of subpoenas to four individuals within Trump’s inner circle. Included in the list are Amy Kremer, Kylie Kremer, Cynthia Chafian, Caroline Wren, Maggie Mulvaney, Justine Caporale, Tim Unes, Megan Powers, Hannah Salem, Lyndon Brentnall, and Katrina Pierson.
In a letter Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson wrote to each subpoena recipient, he emphasized the intention behind the order to give testimony and submit records. “The Select Committee is investigating the facts, circumstances, and causes of the January 6th attack and issues relating to the peaceful transfer of power, in order to identify and evaluate lessons learned and to recommend to the House and its relevant committees corrective laws, policies, procedures, rules, or regulations,” he said. “The inquiry includes an examination of how various individuals and entities coordinated their activities leading up to the events of January 6, 2021.”
More persons of interest are expected to receive subpoenas in the weeks to come as the select committee continues its investigations. Among them could be Trump’s two eldest sons, Donald Jr. and Eric.