Jan. 6 Panel Subpoenas Eric Trump's Phone Records

CNN calls latest development a 'significant escalation'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 18, 2022 5:42 PM CST
Updated Jan 19, 2022 1:18 AM CST
Jan. 6 Panel Subpoenas Giuliani, Powell
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani is seen during a talk radio show at the WABC studios in New York Sept. 10, 2021.   (AP Photo/Robert Bumsted, File)

(Newser) Update: The House Jan. 6 committee has subpoenaed and obtained phone records linked to Eric Trump and Kimberly Guilfoyle, Donald Trump Jr.'s fiancee, sources tell CNN. The network calls it a "significant escalation" of the probe as it relates to former President Trump's role in the attack, and says it appears to be the first time the committee has subpoenaed a member of the Trump family. The records will only show the committee the date, time, and length of incoming and outgoing calls and a log of text messages, but not the content of the messages. Our earlier story from Tuesday follows:

The House panel investigating the Capitol riot wants to speak to the legal team that pushed Donald Trump's election fraud claims before, during, and after the attack. The House Select Committee has subpoenaed Rudy Giuliani and fellow Trump lawyers Sidney Powell, Jenna Ellis, and Boris Epshteyn, the New York Times reports. "The four individuals we’ve subpoenaed today advanced unsupported theories about election fraud, pushed efforts to overturn the election results, or were in direct contact with the former President about attempts to stop the counting of electoral votes,” panel chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson said Tuesday, per Politico.

Giuliani, Trump's personal attorney, called for "trial by combat" when he addressed Trump supporters before the rally, and called lawmakers later on Jan. 6 to try to persuade them to delay certifying President Biden's election win, the Times notes. Ellis wrote memos arguing that Mike Pence had the power to prevent Biden's win from being certified while Powell, who is being sued for $1.3 billion by Dominion Voting Systems, claimed the company's machines had shifted votes from Trump to Biden and filed numerous lawsuits trying to overturn the election results. The House panel said Epshteyn discussed delaying the certification of election results in a call with Trump early on Jan. 6.

Giuliani and Epshteyn were among the Trump advisers who met at a "command center" in a Washington, DC hotel to coordinate efforts to overturn the results, the Washington Post reports. The House panel asked all four lawyers to provide documents by Feb. 1 and to appear for a deposition Feb. 8, reports Politico. In a statement to the Post, Giuliani lawyer Robert Costello called the subpoena "just more political theater from the committee." "It should be obvious, even to a non-lawyer like Bennie Thompson, that besides executive privilege we have attorney-client privilege," he said. (Read more Capitol riot stories.)

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