Capitol riot committee subpoenas ex-Trump adviser Peter Navarro

Mr Navarro is a conspiracy theorist who once made up sources for his own books

Andrew Feinberg
Washington, DC
Wednesday 09 February 2022 22:10 GMT
Donald Trump ‘said the criminal part out loud’ with election plan, says Democrat

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Louise Thomas

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The House select committee investigating the 6 January insurrection has issued a subpoena for documents and testimony from Peter Navarro, the former White House trade adviser who reportedly helped develop a plan to install former president Donald Trump in the White House for a second term against the wishes of American voters.

In a statement, select committee chair Bennie Thompson said he expects Mr Navarro to join the more than 500 witnesses who have already given evidence to the nine-member panel’s inquiry.

He also noted that the Harvard-trained economist — who in the waning days of the Trump administration styled himself as an election expert despite having no expertise in the subject — “hasn’t been shy” in discussing the plan he formulated to overturn the 2020 election or Mr Trump’s support for those plans.

Since leaving government service upon expiration of Mr Trump’s term, Mr Navarro has continued to promote a string of false claims about the conduct of the 2020 election which track closely with similar lies told by other pro-Trump figures involved in the push to overturn the 2020 election.

On his personal website, he has put forth a series of documents he calls the “Navarro Report” — which he released in December 2020 while still a government employee —detailing a range of conspiracy theories he hoped would give Republicans in Congress cause to reject electoral votes from swing states won by Mr Biden.

The plan, which he dubbed the “Green Bay Sweep” and described to Rolling Stone as the “last, best chance” to put Mr Trump in the White House again regardless of voter preferences, would have required Congress to spend as many as 24 hours debating what were baseless challenges to electoral votes in order to pressure then-vice president Mike Pence into unilaterally blocking certification of the electoral college and declaring himself and Mr Trump the winners.

Peter Navarro
Peter Navarro

Mr Navarro also told The Daily Beast he “had over 100 congressman committed to” the “perfect plan”.

“Because you have already discussed these and other relevant issues ... in interviews with reporters and ... on a podcast, we look forward to discussing them with you as well,” Mr Thompson added.

The former Trump adviser is expected to produce documents to the committee by 23 February and appear to give evidence in person on 2 March, but it’s unlikely that he will obey the committee’s directives.

Mr Navarro has already been held in contempt by another House committee — a select panel on the coronavirus crisis — after he refused to testify or turn over documents by 8 December last year.

The ex-White House trade aide has claimed he is acting on a “direct order” from Mr Trump, who is purportedly claiming executive privilege over his testimony.

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