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Key House chairs request wide range of documents on US Capitol riot

House committee chairs are requesting documents and communications from before, during and after the January 6 attack on the US Capitol from a wide range of entities, including the White House, federal agencies, local law enforcement and the House and Senate sergeants-at-arms.

The committees are requesting documents and communications prior to January 6 regarding the counting of the Electoral College votes, discussion of potential demonstrations or violence leading up to the insurrection and the subsequent discussion through January 20 about the aftermath.

Notably, the committees have also asked the White House for documents and communications by then-Trump administration employees.

“Our Committees are requesting information relating to the January 6, 2021, assault on the U.S. Capitol, which killed five people and injured hundreds more,” the chairs wrote.

Should the documents make their way into public view, communications by those employees could be monumental. Little is known about the Trump White House’s intentions and expectations for January 6 — a day that then-President Donald Trump would speak at a rally in Washington before Congress met to finalize the election victory of his rival, Joe Biden — or the internal discussions about the aftermath of the insurrection.

Further, the committees have asked specifically for communications between the federal agencies and White House staff, relationships that have not yet been explored fully in the congressional committee investigations and could help answer how or whether the White House and other agencies may have coordinated efforts ahead of time.

The request represents a new wave of Capitol Hill inquiry, which some congressional aides noted had slowed after an initial flurry of hearings and document dumps from intelligence and law enforcement agencies.

The committees have sent letters requesting documents from the White House chief of staff, the National Archives, the Department of Justice, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Defense, the National Guard, the Department of Homeland Security, the director of national intelligence, the Department of the Interior, US Park Police, the mayor of Washington, the Metropolitan Police Department, the architect of the Capitol, the Senate and House sergeants-at-arms and the US Capitol Police.

In the letters, the committees asked the agencies to prioritize specific content, including investigations into federal employees who may have participated in the riot, communications with riot participants if they exist and documents related to threat assessment.

In the letters to the FBI and the Justice Department, the chairs wrote, “We understand that the Department continues to investigate and prosecute individuals involved in the events on January 6, 2021.”

“We are happy to work with you to ensure that the document requests in this letter do not interfere with ongoing investigations and prosecutions,” they wrote.

The House committees asked for the documents to be delivered by April 8.

Article Topic Follows: National Politics

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