(Headline USA) Former President Donald Trump intends to assert executive privilege in a partisan congressional investigation into the Jan. 6 uprising at the US Capitol, a move that could prevent the testimony of onetime aides, according to a letter sent by his lawyers.
The letter went to at least some witnesses who were subpoenaed by the House committee and it makes clear that Trump plans to invoke privileges meant to protect presidential communications from being shared with Congress.
The substance of the letter was described Thursday by a person who has seen it and who spoke on condition of anonymity to The Associated Press because the letter was not yet public.
Spokespeople for Trump did not immediately return messages seeking comment.
The move sets the stage for a likely clash with House Democrats who are investigating the roles of Trump and his allies in the run-up to the revolt, when thousands of Trump supporters were among those who broke into the Capitol or were admitted in as Congress was certifying the disputed results of the presidential election.
The committee—which was formed over the summer by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.—last month issued subpoenas to Mark Meadows, Trump’s former chief of staff; Dan Scavino, the former deputy chief of staff for communications; Kashyap Patel, a former Defense Department official; and Steve Bannon, a former Trump adviser.
Politico reported the existence of the letter earlier Thursday, the deadline the committee set for compliance.
It was not immediately clear how witnesses would respond to Trump’s decision to invoke executive privilege or what consequences that would face if they refuse to cooperate.
In related news, Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., who is the chair of the so-called select committee investigating the revolt, was called out for his hypocrisy by the son of a slain police officer, Just the News reported.
“I don’t think there’s probably a more anti-cop person or anti-police-officer person in the country than Bennie,” said Bill Skinner, who was 12 when his father, Louis, was shot in 1971 by a group of black secessionists in Mississippi.
Thompson was revealed to have expressed support for the group, Republic of New Africa.
“He’s not pro-cop,” Skinner said. “The only reason he’s doing this is because of his hatred of Donald Trump.”
Adapted from reporting by the Associated Press