(CNN) – The Democratic-controlled House voted Tuesday night to recommend the Justice Department to bring criminal charges against Trump’s former White House secretary general, Mark Meadows, for failing to appear before the Select Committee to investigate the January 6 attack on the United States Capitol.
The result of the vote was 222-208. Two Republicans on the select committee, Representatives Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, voted with Democrats for the amnesty.
On Monday, the House Select Committee voted unanimously to hold Meadows in contempt of Congress, and now it’s up to the Justice Department to decide whether to file criminal charges against President Donald Trump’s former White House secretary general.
The vote, although approved by the Democratic majority, marks a significant moment in the January 6 investigation given Meadows’ role as Trump’s White House Secretary of State and knowledge of efforts to nullify the 2020 election. Meadows is the second official to face such a recommendation from the team. The committee approved a criminal contempt report against Trump ally Steve Bannon in October after he refused to meet the subpoena date.
Promoter insists on executive franchise
Meadows has consistently insisted that it wants to protect some of her conversations with the former president under the allegations of executive privilege, but has already handed over thousands of documents that, according to the commission, increase her need to testify.
But so far, Meadows has refused to do so, and his challenge was the focus of Tuesday’s vote to bring him to criminal charges.
“The select committee’s report that referred Mr. Meadows on criminal contempt charges is clear and compelling,” Committee Chairman Benny Thompson, a Democrat from Mississippi, said Tuesday. “As Secretary General of the White House, Mr. Meadows played a role or witnessed key events leading up to it, including the January 6 attack on the United States Capitol.”
Meadows’ attorney issued a new statement Tuesday before the House vote and said his client was cooperating with the committee in some way, but emphasized that he could not be forced to appear for questioning because he did not have “a license to waive executive privilege” that Trump claims.
His attorney, George J.
Wyoming Republican Representative Liz Cheney, vice chair of the select committee, said Tuesday that Meadows has received numerous text messages urging Trump to take action to stop the unrest he created without claiming any concession.
Later Tuesday, Thompson told CNN that the committee “will decide in a week or so when to release” the names of the authors of the January 6 text messages to Meadows after members cited several exchanges between the former White House secretary and lawmakers as Riots broke out.
Thompson said committee members felt it was “important” to publish the content before the names were published.
“Then we will review our committee to determine if and when to release them,” Thompson said. “We will. I can’t tell you exactly when it will be.”
When asked if there were senators texting Meadows on January 6, Thompson revealed, “At this point, they’re just members of the House.”
He also said the committee would likely notify members of the Republican Party before taking any action.
He singled out others in Trump’s circle
The commission was willing to move forward with the contempt charge of former Justice Department official Jeffrey Clark, but it is giving him another chance to testify as he says he plans to file for the Fifth Amendment.
Meanwhile, the select committee continued its investigation, interviewing more witnesses on Tuesday, including former Vice President Mike Pence’s national security adviser, Keith Kellogg.
Last month, Kellogg became the first person from Pence’s inner circle summoned by the commission. En su carta a Kellogg, el comité expresó específicamente interés en saber más sobre una reunión de enero de 2021 con Trump y el abogado de la Casa Blanca, Pat Cipollone, durante la cual Trump insistió en que Pence no ccertificara la elección, y Meeting.
The commission also stated in its letter that Kellogg was at the White House on January 6 when the attack erupted and that he had “first-hand information” about Trump’s “statements and reactions to the Capitol uprising.”
Kellogg is considered a key witness due to his closeness to Trump on January 6. The former president’s national security adviser, Robert O’Brien, was out of town that day.
Kellogg’s attorney told CNN on Tuesday that his client is cooperating with investigators. She also said that Kellogg did not confirm executive privilege in the testimony or documentation.
While one of the committee’s advisers declined to comment on what was brought up or responded to during the statement, they did not refute the claim that Kellogg is cooperating with the committee.
‘They have good reason to shiver’
The committee also spoke with Dustin Stockton, one of the organizers behind the January 5-6 pro-Trump rallies.
Before meeting with the commission, Stockton’s attorney, Josh Nass, told reporters that his client had text messages and emails. With people “of high ranks in the former president’s orbit,” as well as with members of Congress, which she will hand over on Tuesday to the committee.
These lawmakers and people close to Trump “have good reason to shiver today,” Nas said.
“We’re talking about all kinds of…e-mail correspondence and text messages,” he said.
CNN’s Ryan Nobles, Kristen Wilson, Holmes Lybrand, and Manu Raju contributed to this report.