Trump may obey Jan 6 subpoena but only if his testimony is broadcast live, report says

Trump faces risk of perjury charges if he agrees to testify

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar
Friday 14 October 2022 08:02 BST
Trump shares video of 'sham committee' after Jan 6 panel subpoenas him

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Donald Trump has reportedly been telling his aides that he may obey the subpoena issued by the Jan 6 House select committee, provided his testimony is aired live.

The select committee on Thursday voted 9-0 to subpoena the twice impeached one-time president, demanding his testimony as the bombshell hearing described his multi-part plan to overturn his 2020 election loss, which led to the US Capitol insurrection by a mob largely comprising his supporters.

Following the announcement, Mr Trump has been telling his aides that he is considering obeying the subpoena as long as he gets to do so live, The New York Times reported on Thursday, citing a person familiar with his discussions.

“However, it is unclear whether the committee would accept such a demand,” the Times added.

If Mr Trump appears before the committee, he would be made to testify under oath and face the risk of perjury charges.

He would also become the first former president to give evidence before a congressional committee since March 1983, when Gerald Ford appeared at a hearing of the Senate Judiciary subcommittee.

In the hearing, just weeks before the midterm elections, the panel summed up Mr Trump’s “staggering betrayal” of his oath of office.

Representative and chairman of the committee Bennie Thompson called Mr Trump “the one person at the centre of the story of what happened on January 6”, adding that the panel needed to hear from him in a way that went “beyond” the fact-findings.

“This is a question about accountability to the American people. He is required to answer for his actions,” he added.

Wyoming congresswomen Liz Cheney, who is the vice chair of the panel and one of two Republicans on the committee, presented a number of videos showing Mr Trump’s associates invoking their right against self-incrimination.

“We must seek the testimony under oath of January 6’s central player,” she said.

The 45th president took to Truth Social to slam the nine-member House panel, calling it a “sham committee”.

“Why didn’t the Unselect Committee ask me to testify months ago? Why did they wait until the very end, the final moments of their last meeting? Because the Committee is a total ‘BUST’ that has only served to further divide our Country which, by the way, is doing very badly - A laughing stock all over the World?” he lashed out on Truth Social.

“The Unselect Committee knowingly failed to examine the massive voter fraud which took place during the 2020 Presidential Election - The reason for what took place on January 6th.”

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