Former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows will not cooperate with the committee of inquiry into the Jan.6 attack on the Capitol, the latest reversal for a key figure in the former president’s administration Donald Trump.
In November, Meadows’ attorney George Terwilliger said his client would not cooperate until the courts ruled on Trump’s executive privilege claims. But late last month, committee chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., Said Meadows had provided documents and would be sitting for a deposition with the committee soon.
On Tuesday, Terwilliger again said Meadows would not testify. In a letter to the committee, Terwilliger wrote that Meadows “is precluded from making a unilateral decision to waive claims of executive privilege claimed by the former president.” But he left open the possibility that Meadows could answer written questions.
The Associated Press and Politico both reported on the letter.
Terwilliger said in the letter that Meadows had agreed to provide “thousands of pages of responsive material” to the committee and was willing to testify on “non-privileged matters”. But new information from the committee indicated “that the select committee does not intend to abide by the limits on executive privilege,” he wrote.
He also revealed that the committee had issued subpoenas to Meadows’ communications provider.
Several former administration officials and campaign advisers also refused to cooperate with the committee’s investigation.
Trump is fighting a subpoena for administration files. So far, only former Trump political strategist Steve Bannon has faced criminal charges for his refusal to cooperate. He was charged with criminal contempt after ignoring a subpoena. The committee also called on the Justice Department to charge former Justice Department official Jeffrey Clark with contempt.
The committee’s summons seeks to establish communications between Meadows and Trump on Jan.6 and between Meadows and the organizers of a rally where the president spoke before the attack on Capitol Hill.
It is also after reports of Meadows’ contacts with the Department of Justice and state officials to call for investigations into electoral fraud. Courts have dismissed over 60 election prosecutions for lack of quality or merit.
Contribution: Bart Jansen