Former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows has agreed to testify and provide documents to the congressional committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection on the Capitol, a potentially major breakthrough for the panel.
Meadows, who was President Donald Trump’s top aide on the day of the riot, has agreed to give a deposition to the panel and has already provided documentation demanded in a subpoena.
“Meadows has been engaging with the Select Committee,” Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., the committee chairman, said Tuesday in a statement. “He has produced records to the committee and will soon appear for an initial deposition.”
CNN first reported the blockbuster deal with Meadows, who could potentially provide the most detailed account so far of Trump’s actions leading up to and on Jan. 6.
Analysts warned there are still more questions than answers about how Meadows will handle his appearance before the committee.
Despite the deal, Meadows may plan to refuse to answer some questions, citing Trump’s claims of executive privilege. He could also invoke his own Fifth Amendment right to avoid self-incrimination, although he might want to avoid that humiliation.
A lawyer for Meadows, George Terwilliger, suggested he has won some concessions from the committee about what topics he will be grilled on.
“We appreciate the Select Committee’s openness to receiving voluntary responses on nonprivileged topics,” Terwilliger told CNN.
The deal spares Meadows from the prospect of his case being referred to the Department of Justice for possible prosecution for defying a subpoena from Congress.
Meadows’ effort to reach a deal with the panel is in total contrast to the stance taken by right-wing firebrand Steve Bannon, who was hit with contempt charges after he refused to testify and turn over documents.
Former Department of Justice official Jeffrey Clark may face a similar fate. The committee will vote on whether to make a criminal referral on Wednesday.
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