Jan. 6 committee’s Trump subpoena an attempt to divert conversation ahead of midterms, political insiders say


The House Select Committee on Jan. 6 issued a subpoena to former President Donald Trump on Friday in relation to the 2021 riot at the Capitol, and the committee’s decision could influence nationwide midterm elections just over two weeks away.

Trump is requested to appear for a deposition on Nov. 14 at 10 a.m., either in the U.S. Capitol or via video conference, and provide records regarding his actions on the day when rioters stormed the Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021. The committee did not ask Trump to appear for an open hearing.

The subpoena requests documents and communications between Trump and aides, staff and colleagues from Signal, an encrypted messaging app.

Kellyanne Conway, a pollster and Fox News contributor who previously served as a senior counselor to Trump during his tenure in the White House, insists the events of January 6 are not among top concerns for voters and that the timing of the subpoena is “symbolic and suspicious.”


“January 6th was a terrible day in our nation’s history. I’m still in shock and not in awe,” Conway said in a statement to Fox News Digital. “Some 650 days later, voters are focused on rising crime and rising costs, not January 6th, which ranked as the NINETEENTH most important issue in the latest Harvard-Harris poll.”

“If President Trump was central to the January 6th Committee’s proceedings, why are they ending with him rather than starting with him? With a few weeks before the midterm elections and a few months until Republicans assume majority control of Congress, reasonable people can be excused for thinking this subpoena is somewhere between symbolic and suspicious,” she added.

The committee agreed to the subpoena for testimony from Trump during its business meeting last week.


Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., a fierce critic of Trump and one of only 10 GOP House members who voted to impeach him following the events of Jan. 6, offered the subpoena motion after members made a presentation of Trump’s role in the Capitol riot. The committee’s vote was unanimous.

Mark Penn, a Fox News contributor and Democratic strategist who previously worked with former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, told Fox News Digital that most voters see the committee as a “political sideshow” as it aims to “create discussion” about Jan. 6 instead of other problems facing the nation.

“Most voters see the Jan 6th committee as a political sideshow,” Penn said. “The committee obviously wants to put Trump front and center as much as they can and create discussion about Jan 6 instead of inflation, immigration and crime.”

Last week, on October 14, Trump published a letter ripping the House Select Committee on Jan. 6 for failing to investigate what he considers basic questions surrounding the riot.

“The Unselect Committee has willfully ignored the fact that days before January 6, 2021, I recommended and authorized thousands of troops to be deployed to ensure that there was peace, safety, and security at the Capitol and throughout Washington, D.C. on January 6th because I knew, just based on instinct and what I was hearing, that the crowd coming to listen to my speech, and various others, would be a very big one, far bigger than anyone thought possible,” Trump wrote.

Fox News’ Timothy H.J. Nerozzi contributed to this story.

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