Jan. 6 committee sets contempt vote for former Trump aides Peter Navarro, Dan Scavino

The vote is set for Monday. Peter Navarro is a former senior trade adviser, and Dan Scavino, is a former deputy chief of staff, to former President Donald Trump.

  • The Jan. 6 committee set a vote for Monday on whether to cite the two with criminal contempt.
  • Both have been subpoenaed by the panel. Scavino last fall, Navarro in February.
  • The committee said Navarro was involved in efforts to delay the certification of the 2020 election.
  • Scavino remained close to Trump during the run-up to Jan. 6.

A special House committee investigating the Capitol attack has set a Monday vote on whether to cite two top aides to former President Donald Trump with criminal contempt.

Peter Navarro, a former senior trade adviser, and Dan Scavino, a former deputy chief of staff, are the latest targets of the Jan. 6 panel, which has demanded testimony and documents from a number of top former administration officials.

A subpoena had been issued for Scavino last fall, while Navarro was issued a summons last month.

Navarro, the committee has asserted, was involved in efforts to delay the certification of the 2020 presidential election results during a special session of Congress and sought to change the results, according to a committee press release. 

Peter Navarro, an assistant to President Trump, is the director of the Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy.

Committee Chair Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., has said Navarro "hasn't been shy" about his role in attempting to overturn the election results and even referenced Trump's support for his plans in interviews and in his own book. 

“Mr. Navarro appears to have information directly relevant to the Select Committee’s investigation into the causes of the January 6th attack on the Capitol," Thompson said last month.

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The committee said Scavino remained close to Trump during the run-up to Jan. 6, and was "with the former President on January 5th during a discussion of how to convince Members of Congress not to certify the election for Joe Biden.

"Prior to the January 6th March for Trump, Mr. Scavino promoted the event on Twitter, encouraging people to 'be a part of history.' 

White House Director of Social Media Dan Scavino and White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham walk across the South Lawn to board Marine One from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC for Camp David in Maryland on August 30, 2019.

"And records indicate that Mr. Scavino was tweeting messages from the White House on January 6, 2021," the committee said.

Navarro described the committee's action as an "unprecedented partisan assault on executive privilege."

"The committee knows full well that President Trump has invoked executive privilege and it is not my privilege to waive," he said in a text message.

"If President Trump waives the privilege, I would be happy to testify. It is premature for the  committee to pursue criminal charges against an individual of the highest rank within the White House for whom executive privilege undeniably applies."

Earlier this month, Biden refused to support Navarro's privilege claim.

"Until this matter has been settled at the Supreme Court, where it is inevitably headed, the Committee should cease its tactics of harassment and intimidation. I would be happy to cooperate with the committee in expediting a review of this matter by the Supreme Court and look forward to arguing the case."

An attorney for Scavino did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The committee has recommended criminal contempt charges so far against former Trump aides Steve Bannon, Mark Meadows and former Justice Department official Jeffrey Clark.

The Justice Department has taken up the case against Bannon, but has made no public decision related to Meadows. The full House has yet to take action on Clark's contempt citation that would prompt a referral to the Justice Department for possible prosecution. 

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