Now that the House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection has made a formal request to telecom companies for the phone records of several GOP lawmakers, it’s clear that many of those Republicans are going to be faced with making a difficult choice if they’re called to testify.
Specifically, CNN is reporting that 11 Republicans are on the list:
“The list is said to be evolving and could be added to as the investigation steps up. As of now it includes Republican Reps. Lauren Boebert of Colorado, Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, Jim Jordan of Ohio, Andy Biggs of Arizona, Paul Gosar also of Arizona, Mo Brooks of Alabama, Madison Cawthorn of North Carolina, Matt Gaetz of Florida, Louie Gohmert of Texas, Jody Hice of Georgia and Scott Perry of Pennsylvania.”
The committee “will also request the records of the former President be preserved, as well as his daughter Ivanka, his sons Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, as well as his daughter-in-law Lara Trump and Kimberly Guilfoyle, who is Trump Jr.’s girlfriend and worked on the campaign.”
All of this, according to CNN legal analyst Elie Honig, means that members of Congress who are subpoenaed for testimony will have few legal options:
“What if the committee subpoenas its own: Jim Jordan, Lauren Boebert and Kevin McCarthy, will they fight back against it? Legally I don’t see a basis to do that — there’s no way they can call on that to try to get out of that.
“Even conversations that may have happened between, let’s say, Kevin McCarthy and the White House — that won’t be subject to executive privilege because it’s outside of the executive branch. All they really can do to avoid testifying, maybe there’s political ways, but they can take the Fifth. Anyone can take the Fifth if they think they may have criminal liability. They’re entitled to do that [but it] sure does look terrible.”
Everyone is entitled to plead the Fifth instead of testifying against themselves, according to the Constitution, but it’s instructive to note that former President Donald Trump once said this about those who do so:
“The mob takes the Fifth. If you’re innocent, why are you taking the Fifth Amendment?”
If all of the Republicans under suspicion by the committee are innocent, why would they take the Fifth? Using Trump’s logic, it means they’re guilty.
Featured Image Via NBC News