The House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol announced Tuesday that Mark Meadows, former President Donald Trump’s chief of staff, is “engaging” with the panel’s probe into the insurrection.
The news was first reported by CNN.
The move by Meadows, a former North Carolina congressman and the former president’s chief of staff during the Jan. 6 riot, staves off a referral for a criminal contempt charge – for now.
“Mr. Meadows has been engaging with the Select Committee through his attorney,” the panel’s chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said in a statement. “He has produced records to the committee and will soon appear for an initial deposition.”
“The Select Committee expects all witnesses, including Mr. Meadows, to provide all information requested and that the Select Committee is lawfully entitled to receive,” Thompson continued. “The Committee will continue to assess his degree of compliance with our subpoena after the deposition.”
News of the agreement comes as a federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., is hearing arguments from the former president’s attorneys in an attempt to withhold the transmission of documents related to the violent insurrection to the panel.
Former President Trump is attempting to exert executive privilege over the records, which include call logs, drafts of speeches and other documents, after President Joe Biden waived it.
A judge rejected Trump’s claims earlier this month, saying that “Presidents are not kings, and Plaintiff is not president,” but a federal appeals court blocked the transmission of the records until the court could review the case.
Given the stakes of the case, it’s likely that which ever side does not emerge victorious will appeal to the Supreme Court.
In a statement to CNN, Meadows’ attorney George Terwilliger said that there is an agreement between Meadows and the panel about dealing with information that could fall under the umbrella of executive privilege.
“As we have from the beginning, we continue to work with the Select Committee and its staff to see if we can reach an accommodation that does not require Mr. Meadows to waive Executive Privilege or to forfeit the long-standing position that senior White House aides cannot be compelled to testify before Congress,” Terwilliger told CNN. “We appreciate the Select Committee’s openness to receiving voluntary responses on non-privileged topics.”
The panel was reportedly considering contempt charges against Meadows prior to the agreement.
This is a developing story. Check back later for further updates.