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Capitol riot committee: Who are the latest figures to be subpoenaed

Capitol riot committee: Who are the latest figures to be subpoenaed
New targets are top members of Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign

The House select committee conducting the investigation into the 6 January attack on the US Capitol made another move on Monday by announcing six subpoenas targeting members of former President Donald Trump’s campaign and legal team.

The six targets of the committee, who join top Trump insiders including Steve Bannon and Mark Meadows following a previous round of subpoenas, are accused in letters from lawmakers of being personally involved in the former president’s efforts to spread falsehoods about the 2020 election, eventually leading to the attack on the Capitol by a mob intent on thwarting the count of Electoral College votes.

Their targeting also shows that the panel is intent on gathering information from many former members of the Trump campaign and the president’s orbit, resulting in a broad picture of the events leading up to the deadly attack on Congress.

Here’s a breakdown of the committee’s latest targets:

Michael Flynn

Michael Flynn is a retired lieutenant general in the Army and one of Mr Trump’s longest-running allies. The ex-general served as the president’s first national security adviser before being ousted after it was revealed that he misled Vice President Mike Pence regarding his contacts with Russian officials.

More recently, he was the recipient of a pardon from the former president involving his conviction on a charge of lying to FBI investigators, and despite not holding a White House position was involved in Oval Office discussions with the president and top officials as they plotted to fight Mr Trump’s election defeat in the courts and in Congress.

In one December 2020 meeting at the White House described by the panel in its letter to Mr Flynn, the ex-general was involved in discussions surrounding the potential seizure of voting machines and a declaration of a national emergency, two prospects which the president never ended up pursuing.

Bill Stepien

Bill Stepien was the man responsible for Mr Trump’s failed 2020 reelection campaign, serving as the former president’s campaign manager after he replaced Brad Parscale, Mr Trump’s former social media manager, in July of that year.

The committee’s interest in Mr Stepien is more general, as it cites his role in overseeing all aspects of the Trump campaign and its weaponisation of “Stop the Steal” messaging in the days following the 2020 election as Mr Trump continued to fundraise and gin up anger among his supporters with false claims about voting machines and supposed fraud.

Bernard Kerik

Mr Kerik is one of the most unique individuals to be subpoenaed so far by the committee thanks to his former role as commissioner of police in New York City. The conservative ex-commissioner served as an adviser to Mr Trump’s reelection campaign and was pardoned for his tax fraud conviction early last year by the president; he later was personally involved in the campaign’s efforts to allege widespread voter fraud after the election took place.

Importantly, he was one of several attendees including Rudy Giuliani and Mr Bannon at the Willard Hotel in Washington DC one day before the deadly attack on the Capitol in which attendees discussed “options for overturning the results of the November 2020 election”, according to the committee’s letter.

John Eastman

Mr Eastman was an attorney for the 2020 Trump campaign whose role as an architect of plans to overturn the election came into view in recent months after the attack on the Capitol occurred.

The now-infamous “Eastman Memo”, authored by Mr Eastman, outlined a plan for Vice President Mike Pence to declare the Electoral College votes of several states contested by the Trump campaign’s false accusations of voter fraud “invalid”, thereby reducing the number of Electoral College votes awarded to President Joe Biden. Mr Pence would then throw the election to a vote in the House of Representatives.

The scheme, which had no basis in the Constitution, was never implemented and Mr Pence ultimately certified the election of Mr Biden.

Jason Miller

Mr Miller served on both the 2016 and 2020 Trump campaigns as an adviser and communications aide; those efforts continued after the 2020 election, when according to the committee he assisted Mr Giuliani in setting up press events where he launched false claims about election fraud and demanded that state legislatures step in to decertify election results.

One of Mr Giuliani’s most infamous appearances at the time occurred at a landscaping company in Pittsburgh which bore the name “Four Seasons” – an apparent mixup wherein Mr Giuliani’s staff had presumably been attempting to book space at a fancy hotel.

Mr Miller was also present at the 5 January meeting at the Willard Hotel, headquarters for the Trump campaign’s election fraud misinformation effort, according to the committee.

Angela McCallum

Ms McCallum served as National Executive Assistant to the 2020 Trump campaign, and therefore was involved in the campaign’s post-election efforts to spread misinformation about the vote.

The committee noted specifically in its subpoena that Ms McCallum was heard on a voicemail left for an unnamed Michigan state lawmaker asking whether the former president could count on that lawmaker’s support, an apparent reference to efforts to have state legislatures decertify the results in Michigan and other state in which the Trump campaign had levied charges of election fraud.