House recommends contempt charges for Meadows

Dec. 14 (UPI) -- The House voted 222-208 Tuesday evening to recommend contempt charges for former President Donald Trump's White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows for refusing to comply with a subpoena issued by a select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riots.

The vote fell mostly on party lines with two Republicans, Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, casting votes in favor of holding Meadows in contempt.


Meadows' case now goes to the Justice Department, with possible criminal prosecution taken to a federal grand jury for consideration. He could face a $100,000 fine and possible jail time.

Following the vote, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on Twitter that lawmakers were fulfilling their "duty to the Constitution and the nation to find the truth of that dark day." She said Meadows holds key information on the attack that saw pro-Trump rioters seek to overturn the certification of the 2020 election.

Meadows, who earlier cooperated with the probe, has filed a lawsuit against Pelosi arguing the committee has overstepped its bounds and is infringing on executive privilege, which allows the president to have confidential communications with members of the executive branch.


During the floor debate, Republicans accused Democrats of being more concerned with politics than addressing security concerns at the Capitol. Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, said Democrats were trampling on executive privilege, which he said was a "precedent that's been around since George Washington."

"They only care about attacking their political enemies," said Rep. Jim Banks, R-Ind.

Earlier that day, Cheney, who serves as select committee vice chair, read text messages sent to Meadows by Republican lawmakers in the Rules Committee hearing, including some sent by Donald Trump Jr.

"We need an Oval Office address. He has to lead now. It has gone too far and gotten out of hand," he wrote, according to CNBC. "He's got to condemn this s--- ASAP. The Capitol Police tweet is not enough."

Meadows responded, saying he was "pushing it hard" and that he agreed.

Another message from Fox host Laura Ingraham to Meadows said that the "president needs to tell the people in the Capitol to go home. This is hurting all of us. He is destroying his legacy," CNBC reported.

The texts revealed Tuesday show that the White House knew about the violence unfolding in the Capitol.

Last week, Meadows stated he wouldn't comply with the investigation.


The House already has voted to hold former senior advisor Steve Bannon in contempt for noncompliance. He pleaded not guilty after being charged with two counts of contempt of Congress.

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