The January 6th committee hearings end with criminal referrals for Trump and others

The hearings have just wound up with a unanimous vote to make criminal referrals to the department of justice on four counts:

I. Obstruction of an Official Proceeding (18 U.S.C. § 1512(c))
II. Conspiracy to Defraud the United States (18 U.S.C. § 371
III. Conspiracy to Make a False Statement (18 U.S.C. §§ 371, 1001)
IV. “Incite,” “Assist” or “Aid and Comfort” an Insurrection (18 U.S.C. § 2383)

While the department of justice is not obligated to prosecute based on these referrals, they will add to the pressure to do so. These charges all carry length prison sentences if found guilty and Trump in particular would be disqualified from any future federal or state office if found guilty of the insurrection charge.

The session lasted just a little over an hour and started with brief statements from each of the nine members of the select committee. The first eight were clearly coordinated to provide an overview of the greatest hits from the previous hearings, laying out quickly and clearly how Trump tried all manner of ways to overturn the results, including blatantly lying and trying to find votes in support of him and, when all those failed, instigating his supporters to come to Washington and engage in the mob violence on January 6th and did nothing to stop it for over three hours, ignoring pleas from White House officials to act, instead watching the events of TV in his private dining room. These statements were interspersed with clips from witness testimony and footage of the violence. One new thing (to me at least) emerged, such as the efforts by shadowy individuals funded by anonymous sources to bribe some witnesses to not testify, testify falsely, or deny knowledge of facts.

The last statement was by Jamie Raskin who laid out why the evidence that they received and presented justified criminal referrals of Donald Trump, his lawyer John Eastman, and others who were not named in the hearings but are named in the report as Trump’s chief of staff Mark Meadows and his lawyers Rudolph W. Giuliani, John Eastman, Jeffrey Clark and Kenneth Chesebro He listed the four counts for criminal referrals and then the committee voted unanimously in favor of all of them. The panel also referred four members of Congress, including Republican leader Kevin McCarthy, to the House Ethics Committee for refusing to comply with the subpoenas to testify.

You can read a summary of the report of the committee here. The criminal referrals can be found beginning on page 78. The full report will be released later this week.


  1. billseymour says

    I love it that several Republican congresscritters were refered to the House Ethics Committee.  Probably nothing will come of it…they wouldn’t have enough time to do anything before the Republicans take control of the House; but I do feel a little bit of schadenfreude (not totally honorable, I know, but there it is).

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