The discrepancy in the telephone logs in the official White House records on Jan. 6, 2021, is of “intense interest” to the House Select Committee investigating the attack on the U.S. Capitol, the Rep. said Sunday. Jamie B. Raskin.
In an interview on CBS News’ “Face the Nation,” Raskin, a Democrat from Maryland, noted that a 7.5-hour gap in the phone logs for President Donald Trump’s communications that day covers the period when the assault on the Capitol was taking place.
Raskin said he and other members of the Jan. 6 committee were able to piece together some of Trump’s activities during that time based on interviews and testimony from others, but holes remain.
“It’s a very unusual thing for us to see that suddenly everything goes black for a period of seven hours in terms of tracking the president’s movements and conversations,” Raskin said.
Asked if the discrepancy could be due to incompetence rather than conspiracy, Raskin said the committee took this into account. He added, however, that “the loopholes are oddly suited to the heart of events” on January 6, including when several lawmakers later said they were begging Trump to intervene.
Raskin noted that the committee was aware that the president had participated in calls during this time, “but we don’t have a complete and accurate picture of what was going on during this time, and we’re obviously very interested in that.”
The Jan. 6 bipartisan panel is investigating the 2021 storming of the U.S. Capitol by a pro-Trump mob who tried to prevent confirmation of Joe Biden’s Electoral College victory. The attack killed five people and injured some 140 law enforcement officers.
Trump has tried to assert executive privilege to withhold documents from the committee, which last year ordered the former president to provide records of all his actions and activities on Jan. 6. President Biden has rejected Trump’s claims of executive privilege.
Earlier this year, the National Archives and Records Administration gave the committee 11 pages of White House documents from that day, including the president’s official daily log and White House switchboard call logs.
As first reported by The Washington Post and CBS News, these recordings did not include any documentation of calls made to or by Trump from 11:17 a.m. to 6:54 p.m. on January 6, 2021.
Raskin added that the committee’s mission is to get “the full picture” of everything that happened on January 6, as well as what needs to be done “to fortify democratic institutions and processes against future insurgencies. and coups and attempts to destabilize and overthrow our elections.”
Raskin said he hoped the committee would be able to begin holding long-delayed public hearings in May and was looking for links between the violent insurgency on Capitol Hill and what he called the “coup attempt.” interior” orchestrated by Trump against the Constitution.
“I’m confident that we’re going to be able to tell this story,” Raskin said, adding, “Obviously we’re facing a lot of hurdles now.”
Last week, the committee voted to hold two other former Trump aides — former director of commerce and manufacturing Peter Navarro and former communications chief Daniel Scavino Jr. — in criminal contempt of Congress for refusing to comply with committee subpoenas. Raskin said the House will likely vote this week on whether to refer Navarro and Scavino to the Justice Department for prosecution.
Like Trump and a string of other former aides, Navarro and Scavino tried to claim they were protected by executive privilege and that the subpoenas were an excess on the part of the committee. They are among the latest senior Trump White House officials to face repercussions for refusing to comply with the committee’s Jan. 6 subpoenas.
Former Trump adviser Stephen K. Bannon was charged with contempt of Congress last year, prompting some Republicans to warn they could do the same to Democrats if they regain control of Congress. majority in the House in November.
Mark Meadows, a former Trump White House chief of staff, also refused to cooperate with the committee, leading the House to vote to hold him in contempt of Congress as well in December.
Separately, a federal judge ruled last week that Trump “more likely than not” committed federal crimes while trying to prevent confirmation of Biden’s Electoral College victory.
Asked about the judge’s comments on Sunday, Sen. Roy Blunt, a Missouri Republican who has frequently defended Trump and voted to acquit him in his impeachment trials, was evasive.
“Well, the federal judges are saying a lot of things and we’ll see how that plays out,” Blunt said on ABC News’ “This Week.” “I think the Department of Justice has a job to do and should do it and those involved in planning or carrying out illegal activities on January 6 should be prosecuted.”