The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol is unlikely to call former President Donald Trump as a witness, its chair, Rep. Bennie Thompson, said Tuesday, according to Politico.
“We’re not sure that the evidence that we receive can be any more validated with his presence,” the Mississippi Democrat said adding, “I think the concern is whether or not he would add any more value with his testimony.”
Thompson insisted that “we’ve not canceled out anything, but there’s no feeling among the committee to call [Trump] as a witness at this point,” The Hill reported.
Regarding possible testimony from former Vice President Mike Pence, Thompson said, “We’ve been talking to his lawyers trying to engage them, and that conversation is still going on.”
Politico reported that Thompson had previously suggested that Pence’s testimony may not be necessary due to high-level cooperation from his top advisers.
However, the former vice president could be useful to the committee as a witness to attempts to overturn the election as well as a victim, since Trump backers who attacked the Capitol in an effort to prevent Congress from certifying Joe Biden’s election had Pence as a main target.
Last week the committee made its first public subpoenas to congressman by issuing them to five House Republicans, including Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who had all refused to appear voluntarily, according to Forbes.
Thompson said the panel still has gaps in its information regarding what Trump was doing that day, specifically the 187 minutes it took for the former president to call off his backers during the attack, according to The Hill.
“We’re still rapidly trying to fill it with the information we get from our [National Archives] request, from interviews we’re having with various employees of the White House and what have you," he said. "So we’re doing our due diligence to fill it in.”
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