Former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows told Newsmax Tuesday, ahead of a planned House vote to refer him to the Justice Department for contempt of Congress charges, that the moves are "disappointing but not unexpected," and maintained that he is "not aware" that "anybody at the White House" knew about the Jan. 6 breach at the Capitol before it happened.
"Their agenda is not really about me," Meadows told Newsmax's "Wake Up America." "This is not about holding me in contempt. This is more about Donald Trump and trying to come after him."
Monday, all nine members of the House's select committee investigating the Jan. 6 incidents at the Capitol voted to recommend the criminal charges against Meadows, who has declined to appear before the committee for depositions after he was subpoenaed.
Their vote set up Tuesday's House vote, which will likely be approved by the Democrat-controlled chamber. Meadows, who served in the House for more than seven years before joining the Trump administration in 2020, has sued both the committee and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Meadows has turned over some documents but has held back others, saying they fall under executive privilege guidelines.
He told Newsmax Tuesday that he's been "very consistent from day one" that he would honor former President Trump's executive privilege.
"I believe it's his to waive and not mine," said Meadows. "It's certainly not Congress'."
He also denied Tuesday that immunity in his case was ever on the table, and insisted that Trump "acted in a prudent way" on Jan. 6.
"I can tell you that when it comes to condemning the violence and having any advanced knowledge that a security breach of the Capitol was happening, I'm not aware of anybody at the White House that had any knowledge of that before it happened. Obviously, we condemn that."
Meadows said his stance with the committee changed when it became "very obvious" that it was going to "delve into personal conversations" that he'd had with Trump.
"It was not off-limits," said Meadows. "They were going to continue to press that. That was the central focus of the questions that they provided to us."
Meadows also defended having received text messages on Jan. 6 from Fox News personalities Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham, and Brian Kilmeade urging him to convince Trump to intercede and stop the actions that were happening at the Capitol.
Monday night, Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., read the text messages out loud during a meeting of the Jan. 6 committee, reports The Washington Post.
"According to the records, multiple Fox News hosts knew the president needed to act immediately," Cheney said. "They texted Mark Meadows, and he has turned over those texts."
But Meadows fired back. "There is no problem here, I can tell you," Meadows told Newsmax Tuesday. "A number of people were concerned about the violence.
"All of us were, including the president, the entire nation, so there's no problem here as much as there is a selective disclosure of certain text, trying to feed a narrative that the Jan. 6 committee wants to put forth, and it's this conspiracy that somehow the Jan. 6 breach of the Capitol was somehow a planned effort from the White House, and that's just simply not the case. I think the text messages show that."
And, "when the full report comes out, well, not the full report, when the full story comes out, they will find that President Trump and his aides acted appropriately," said Meadows.
He added that the committee is trying to link the incidents of Jan. 6 with the demands the administration made following the November election.
"Election integrity and the sacredness of our ballot box, making sure that only legal votes count is a critical component of any democracy," said Meadows. "That's what we stand for. That's what all Americans should stand for, and hopefully at the end of the day will be able to support that."
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