Jan. 6 panel concludes Trump likely broke laws in trying to overturn election

Former President Donald Trump speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference

File photo: Former President Donald Trump speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

In a court filing Wednesday evening, the Democratic-led House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol says the evidence it’s accumulated “provides, at minimum, a good-faith basis for concluding” that then-President Donald Trump broke the law with his efforts to obstruct the counting of Electoral College votes.

The filing was part of a court case tied to lawyer John Eastman, who has been fighting a subpoena issued by the committee to share additional documents.

Eastman was a key figure in efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election, sharing a memo detailing how then-Vice President Mike Pence could reject President Biden’s win.

Eastman, the select committee says, had tried to keep some records hidden from the investigation, citing privilege claims.

“The Select Committee’s brief refutes on numerous grounds the privilege claims Dr. Eastman has made to try to keep hidden records critical to our investigation,” committee Chair Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., and top Republican Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., said in a joint statement.

The panel further adds in the filing that it “has a good-faith basis for concluding that the President and members of his Campaign engaged in a criminal conspiracy to defraud the United States.”

Thompson and Cheney note that their committee it is not conducting a criminal investigation, though such allegations could ramp up pressure on the Department of Justice.

Republicans have decried the committee as a partisan attack on Trump.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal