Republican requests more information on ‘rationale’ for Jan. 6 subpoena

ByErma F. Brown

Jun 3, 2022 , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) is requesting “additional information concerning the rationale” for his subpoena from the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol.

In a five-page letter dated last Wednesday to the panel’s chairman, Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), two attorneys representing Biggs outlined objections against the committee and requested information connected to the subpoena.

The investigative committee earlier this month issued subpoenas to Biggs and four other GOP congressmen, all of whom had previously received requests to voluntarily testify before the panel. The lawmakers, however, refused that opportunity, which prompted the subpoenas.

The lawyers are now asking that the committee “facilitate Congressman Biggs’ preparation for any deposition by sharing more information about its intended scope and any documentary exhibits you anticipate using.”

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), who were also issued subpoenas by the committee, have both made similar requests in recent days and criticized the panel.

Reached for comment on Biggs’s letter, committee spokesperson Tim Mulvaney referred The Hill to a statement on Friday regarding McCarthy’s response to the panel. Mulvaney at the time said subpoenaed lawmakers “are hiding behind debunked arguments and baseless requests for special treatment.”

“The refusal of these Members to cooperate is a continued assault on the rule of law and sets a dangerous new precedent that could hamper the House’s ability to conduct oversight in the future,” he added.

Thompson will formally respond to the lawmakers in the coming days, according to Mulvaney.

In its statement announcing the subpoenas earlier this month, the Jan. 6 committee said Biggs took part in meetings involving plans for Jan. 6 and was involved in “plans to bring protestors to Washington for the counting of Electoral College votes.”

The panel also said the Arizona Republican “was involved in efforts to persuade state officials that the 2020 was stolen,” and said he was potentially involved in an effort to receive a presidential pardon for his actions connected to then-President Trump’s attempt to overturn the presidential election results.

In their letter to Thompson last week, the attorneys representing Biggs said the list of topics included in the committee’s initial request for testimony “transgresses the outer perimeter of the Committee’s authority.”

The lawyers also took issue with the subpoena specifically, calling it “legally insufficient” because it did not include an exact location for the testimony. They also said Biggs “has not been properly served with any subpoena emanating from the Committee,” claiming that “no personal service has ever been effectuated on either Congressman Biggs or his attorneys.”

Additionally, Biggs’s lawyers said the panel “Is Not Validly Constituted,” pointing to Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) decision to reject two of the GOP lawmakers McCarthy nominated to the committee.

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