Jan. 6 panel to share 20 transcripts with Justice Department
WASHINGTON (AP) — The House Jan. 6 committee will share 20 of its interview transcripts with the Justice Department as federal prosecutors have been increasingly focused on efforts by former President Donald Trump and his allies to overturn the results of the election.
A committee aide said that the panel will share the 20 transcripts but has “no plans to share additional transcripts at this time.” The person, who requested anonymity to discuss the confidential transaction, would not say which interviews the committee is sharing.
The information sharing comes after the committee had rejected a Justice Department request for transcripts in May. At the time, the committee’s chairman, Mississippi Rep. Bennie Thompson, had said it was “premature” for the committee to share its work because the panel’s probe is ongoing.
Since then, the panel has been negotiating an agreement over the documents as the department has stepped up its probes. Several senior aides to former Vice President Mike Pence have appeared before a federal grand jury and prosecutors have seized records from a group of Republicans who served as fake electors in battleground states won by President Joe Biden. Trump and his allies pushed officials in those states to replace Biden’s duly selected electors with ones who supported him as they advanced claims that his victory had been stolen.
It remains unclear whether prosecutors might seek to bring criminal charges against Trump, who denies any wrongdoing.
Attorney General Merrick Garland, who is facing mounting pressure from congressional Democrats to bring charges against the former president, has said prosecutors will hold anyone accountable — no matter their position — if they broke the law.
In an interview with NBC News this week, Garland said the Justice Department would “bring to justice everybody who was criminally responsible for interfering with the peaceful transfer of power from one administration to another.”
The committee has not said if it plans to eventually share all of its transcripts with the Justice Department or the public. The Jan. 6 panel has done more than 1,000 interviews, but not all of those were formally transcribed.
The Justice Department declined to comment Friday on the transcripts.