Phone talks, chats of pro-Trump GOP & family may be preserved as Jan-6 committee demands HUNDREDS OF records from companies – CNN

Phone talks, chats of pro-Trump GOP & family may be preserved as Jan-6 committee demands HUNDREDS OF records from companies – CNN

The House committee investigating the Capitol riot will demand to preserve telecom and social media records of the members of Congress and the Trump family it believes were involved in the January 6 rally, CNN has reported.

The House Select Committee plans to ask telecom companies to preserve phone records from certain Republican lawmakers, including ex-president Donald Trump, and a group of Trump family members, CNN reported on Monday. All of those whose records have been targeted allegedly played some role in the January 6 'Stop the Steal' rally in Washington DC, which devolved into the riot many in the current administration have termed an insurrection.

While the committee has opted not to publish the names of the lawmakers whose records are being requested, those affected either "attended, spoke, actively planned, or encouraged people to attend," multiple sources familiar with the matter told CNN. The committee has not yet resorted to subpoenaing the records, though it has the power to do so if the companies are uncooperative.

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Those whose names have been made public are, perhaps unsurprisingly, all Republicans. Reps. Lauren Boebert (Colorado), Marjorie Taylor Greene and Jody Hice (Georgia), Louie Gohmert (Texas), Andy Biggs and Paul Gosar (Arizona), Jim Jordan (Ohio), Matt Gaetz (Florida), Mo Brooks (Alabama), Madison Cawthorn (North Carolina), and Scott Perry (Pennsylvania) are among the "exhaustive list of people" Select Committee Chair Bennie Thompson has revealed the committee plans to contact.

According to Thompson, "several hundred" people's phone records would ultimately be requested. Aside from the members of Congress, an array of Trump family members would also be targeted, including sons Donald Jr. and Eric Trump, daughter-in-law Lara Trump, and Donald Jr.'s girlfriend Kimberly Guilfoyle. Nor was chasing after the technology firms the first or only way his committee was seeking the required information – "issuing subpoenas is not the first thing we have to do," he told CNN, declaring that "we'll do what's required to get the information."

At least one member of Congress is pushing back against the seemingly partisan act of surveillance, however. Indiana Rep. Jim Banks (R) lamented in a letter to Thompson that "rifling through the call logs of your colleagues would depart from more than 230 years of Congressional oversight," insisting the "authoritarian undertaking has no place in the House of Representatives and the information you seek has no conceivable legislative purpose."

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Rep. Jordan has warned that continued partisan prowling could trigger a corresponding investigation from the Republican party. While insisting he "had nothing to hide," the congressman warned that if Democrats "cross this line" there could be "political retribution."

It is true that the FBI's investigation into the events of January 6 has thus far turned up no proof of any organized plot to overturn the November 2020 election of Joe Biden, according to four law enforcement officials who spoke to Reuters earlier this month. Nevertheless, federal agents have arrested some 570 people believed to be involved with the unrest, including some members of militia-type groups. However, those groups appeared to lack any real plan of action for what they might do after making it inside the Capitol, the agents found. The scant presence of police during the protest confused many of the demonstrators, several of whom claimed in the aftermath of the riot that they weren't expecting to be let into the Capitol with so little resistance. 

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