They are Moe Brooks, Matt Gaetz, Andy Bigs, Louie Gommert and Scott Perry. The five Republicans attended a meeting with the president in December 2020 to discuss options for changing the election results. They asked about the possibility of a so-called preemptive pardon, which the president can grant before imposing a sentence or even convicting someone of a crime.
Preventive pardons are not uncommon in the United States, but they’ve happened before. Gerald Ford gave one to his predecessor Richard Nixon in 1974. He had resigned over the Watergate scandal, but no charges had been brought against him to date.
Sean Penn at the hearing
Actor Sean Penn was featured at Thursday’s public hearing. He said he was only there for “surveillance as a citizen,” CNN reports. “I think we all saw what happened on that 6th of January, and now we’ll see if justice will be served,” said Ben, 61, who sat next to several police officers.
During hearings in Washington, the committee is trying to establish that former President Donald Trump played a major role in the storming of the Capitol by his supporters. He believed that the election results were incorrect and that incumbent President Joe Biden had been incorrectly elected as the new president. However, the Republican has not provided any evidence for these allegations. Also, all legal protests by Trump’s lawyer team since the election have been dismissed by various courts.
According to the current investigative committee, Trump incited his followers to go to the Capitol and then did nothing for hours to solve the chaos that followed. Trump is also said to have contributed to a plan to alter the January 6 election results.
The actor is known for his years of struggle for human rights and is not shy about regularly criticizing politicians. In February, he was still in Ukraine to shoot a documentary in which residents tell their truth about the Russian invasion.
Searching for a home
Federal investigators also searched Jeffrey Clark’s home on Wednesday. It was Clark who, at Trump’s behest, after the 2020 presidential election, attempted to persuade the Department of Justice to participate in efforts to challenge the election results. The commission investigating the storming of the Capitol has focused only on the role Clark allegedly played on Thursday.
A spokesperson for the Federal Prosecutor’s Office confirmed only that there had been “law enforcement activity” near Lorton, Virginia, on Wednesday. But Ross Vogt, a senior Trump official, deplored the search on Twitter. Clark now works for the Vogts Center for the Renewal of America, a right-wing organization.
In the days before the storm, Trump attempted to appoint a lower-ranking Clark as attorney general after the chief of staff refused to endorse Trump’s theories about voter fraud. Clarke also tried to persuade the chief of state to send a message to states that they had the authority to assign electoral votes to vote for Trump. The intention was to undo the election of Trump’s opponent and incumbent President Biden.
Jeffrey Rosen, acting attorney general in the final weeks of Trump’s presidency, testified before the committee on Thursday, along with his deputy, Richard Donoghue, how Trump put them under extreme pressure. Trump dropped his plans to promote Clark only when it became clear that Rosen, Donoghue and two other top officials would resign and that the best federal prosecutors would follow suit.
From December 23 to January 3, Rosen spoke to Trump nearly every day. Donoghue said Trump has an “arsenal of allegations” about voter fraud, but the allegations are unfounded or conspiracy theories. In the end, Rosen emphasized, the department complied with the law and the facts.
At the end of December, Rosen became a minister after his predecessor William Barr resigned in the battle over the election results.
“Donald Trump did not want the department to conduct an investigation,” said committee chair Penny Thompson. He just wanted the ministry to help him legitimize his lies and declare there was no basis for electoral fraud.
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