Jan 6 Committee Chair Announces Group Will Not Make Criminal Referrals on Trump or Anyone Else

Rep. Liz Cheney publicly disagreed.

QUICK FACTS:
  • Chair of the January 6 Committee, Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS), said Monday that his committee would not be making criminal referrals.
  • Thompson included former President Donald Trump in his statement, saying that it is not their job to refer Trump or anyone else to the Department of Justice.
  • Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY), also a member of the committee and a harsh Trump critic, promptly and publicly disagreed with Thompson.
  • Cheney said via Twitter that the Committee has not issued their official conclusion about potential criminal referrals and that they would announce their decision at an “appropriate time.
  • Despite what lawmakers may or may not make official references to, the DOJ is reportedly using transcripts from the committee’s behind-closed-doors depositions in criminal investigations.
COVERAGE OF THOMPSON’S REPORT:
  • Punchbowl News’ John Bresnahan reported that “Bennie G Thompson says the Jan. 6 select cute will NOT make any criminal referral to the Justice Department on Trump or anyone else.
  • “Thompson said that the [committee] will publicly release all document[s] & materials – including depositions – as part of its public report,” said Bresnahan. “If DOJ wants to talk to members/staff about that material, they will do so, of course. It’s important to note – and people get confused by this – that Congress isn’t equipped for criminal investigations. The 1/6 [committee] can & has made criminal contempt referrals, but it’s not a law enforcement agency.”
  • Thompson is quoted to have said, “That’s not our job. Our job is to look at Jan. 6. What caused it and make recommendations after that… We don’t have the authority.”
BACKGROUND:
  • Cheney is one of two Republicans hand-picked by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) to sit on the committee with the intention of making it a bipartisan committee.
  • Trump and the Wyoming Republican have been locked in contention with Trump’s loud disapproval of the Republican causing potentially devastating results in her Wyoming primary.