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Former Trump adviser Peter Navarro responded Monday to his recent arrest for defying a subpoena from Mississippi Congressman Bennie Thompson and the House Jan. 6 committee, telling Fox News he had made numerous overtures to the Department of Justice in hopes of avoiding a show.
In remarks last week, Navarro said he was stopped by FBI agents at an undisclosed airport while trying to fly to Nashville to meet with former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee.
On Monday, Navarro told “Tucker Carlson Tonight” that federal agents put him in leg irons and strip searched him. He noted that he lived a few yards from the FBI in Penn Quarter, DC, adding that he even gave agents his lawyer’s contact beforehand.
“Wednesday night I emailed Patricia, the assistant attorney, and I said, look, I’m looking for a modus vivendi here. I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place. Let’s see what we can do,” says Navarro.
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Prior to his arrest, Navarro also contacted an FBI agent he named Walter Giordano – who he said had ‘knocked on my door’ a week prior – in hopes of seeking detente while his civil lawsuit against Thompson’s committee was working its way through the legal process.
“They chose a different route. They didn’t call my lawyer. Instead, they went for this shock and awe terrorist strategy – They let me go to the airport, then taken away with five agents, as if I were an Al Qaeda Al Terrorist,” he said, adding that he would have been unconstitutionally deprived of food, water and a lawyer during his detention .
Navarro had accused the government of filing “preventive” criminal charges against him before his civil lawsuit against the Thompson-Cheney committee was heard.
He told Tucker Carlson that the Jan. 6 committee “subpoenaed me illegally” in that it would not be a legitimate committee under the standing rules of the House.
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“I was faced with the untenable choice of maintaining executive privilege, which was not my privilege to waive – it is Donald Trump’s privilege to waive – so I did my duty to the President. I’ve done my duty to this country. And we’re sitting here,” he said.
Navarro’s civil suit focuses on two constitutional issues, which he called the militarization of Congress and the committee’s alleged affront to the separation of powers — as a legislative panel usurping the powers of the judiciary.
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“[The DOJ and committee] got into this whimsical and absurd idea that Biden, a sitting incumbent president, could deprive his immediate predecessor of executive privilege in me, a member of the president’s staff of what the Justice Department itself, as you pointed out, has absolute testimonial immunity,” he said.
The Jan. 6 Committee is also discussing other issues, including abolishing the Electoral College, which Axios said was championed by “outspoken” member Jamie Raskin of Maryland.