Trump Spokesman Sues Jan. 6th Committee That 'Wrongly' Seeks to Obtain His Financial Records

© REUTERS / Octavio JonesFormer President Donald Trump speaks to his supporters during the Save America Rally at the Sarasota Fairgrounds in Sarasota, Florida, U.S. July 3, 2021
Former President Donald Trump speaks to his supporters during the Save America Rally at the Sarasota Fairgrounds in Sarasota, Florida, U.S. July 3, 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 25.12.2021
A growing list of people, such as InfoWars host Alex Jones and Michael Flynn, ex-national security adviser to former President Donald Trump, have sued the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the US Capitol to either block it from obtaining phone records or enforcing subpoenas for documents and testimony.
Ex-President Donald Trump's current spokesman, Taylor Budowich, has sued the 9-member House committee probing the 6 January 2021 insurrection at the US Capitol in an effort to stop it from gaining access to his financial records, Fox News has reported.
Chaired by Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS), the committee had earlier sent a subpoena to JPMorgan Chase for this purpose, as it probes the money trail allegedly leading to the funding and planning of the "Stop the Steal" rally by Trump supporters on 6 January that preceded the Capitol riot.

"The Select Committee wrongly seeks to compel Mr Budowich's financial institution to provide private banking information to the Select Committee that it lacks the lawful authority to seek and to obtain", states the lawsuit filed in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

Budowich, who also sued House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and JPMorgan Chase, represented by Attorney General Loretta Lynch, argued in the court filing that he was being denied due process in the matter and had not been granted an opportunity to review the subpoena to establish the "extent or scope of information and records requested".
The committee is stated as having sent the subpoena to JPMorgan Chase on 23 November. The bank, according to the outlet, sent a notice to Budowich regarding its decision to comply with the subpoena to be delivered on 22 December.
As that was the day that Budowich was in Washington, DC, testifying before the panel, he was only able to read the letter he received at his California home address the following day, 23 December. The notice from JPMorgan Chase had informed him of a Friday deadline to file a legal motion blocking the release of his records to the committee. The notice did not include a copy of the subpoena or any clarifying details.
"To add to the absurdity, neither the committee nor JPMorgan Chase will provide me with a copy of the actual contents of the subpoena", stated Budowich.
Trump's spokesman highlighted the "illegitimate" nature of the probe launched by the committee.

"The Select Committee acts absent any valid legislative power and threatens to violate longstanding principles of separation of powers by performing a law enforcement function absent authority to do so", Budowich argued.

In July, Nancy Pelosi had appointed Illinois Rep. Adam Kinzinger and Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming – the panel's sole Republicans – without the agreement of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. Kinzinger and Cheney had been among the 10 House Republicans who voted for Trump's second impeachment. After Pelosi's move, House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy had stated the committee was a "sham process".
As the House speaker appointed only nine members to the committee, Budowich's attorneys point out that the panel is in breach of its own authorising resolution, which stated the committee "shall" appoint 13 members.
Taylor Budowich's complaint insisted that the subpoena compelling JPMorgan Chase to produce his financial records violates the First Amendment.
'Democracy Under Attack'
Donald Trump's spokesperson also indicated that he had previously cooperated with the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol by sitting for "roughly four hours of sworn testimony" and providing "more than 1,700 pages of documents".
The latter purportedly included bank transactions and text messages related to his "involvement in the planning of a peaceful, lawful rally to celebrate President Trump's accomplishments".

"Democracy is under attack. However, not by the people who illegally entered the Capitol on January 6th, 2021, but instead by a committee whose members walk freely in its halls every day", said Budowich in a statement issued later, after the details of his lawsuit were disclosed.

He added that for him, the federal suit was not about politics.
"Government should not be a weapon that's freely used against political opponents and private citizens — but it seems like this Democrat-led Congress is intent on codifying that precedent", added Budowich. He is seeking a temporary restraining order to prevent the bank from handing over his information to the committee.
© Shannon StapletonTear gas is released into a crowd of protesters, with one wielding a Confederate battle flag that reads "Come and Take It," during clashes with Capitol police
Tear gas is released into a crowd of protesters, with one wielding a Confederate battle flag that reads Come and Take It, during clashes with Capitol police - Sputnik International, 1920, 25.12.2021
Tear gas is released into a crowd of protesters, with one wielding a Confederate battle flag that reads "Come and Take It," during clashes with Capitol police
According to earlier press reports, the Select Committee had written to Taylor Budowich on 22 November, saying that "you solicited a 501(c)4 organisation to conduct a social media and radio advertising campaign to encourage people to attend the rally held on the Ellipse in Washington, D.C., on January 6, 2021, in support of then-President Trump and his allegations of election fraud. The Select Committee has reason to believe your efforts include directing to the 501(c)(4) organisations approximately $200,000 from a source or sources that was not disclosed to the organisation to pay for the advertising campaign".
On 6 January 2021, when Congress was convened in a joint session to certify Democrat Joe Biden's win in the presidential election, thousands of Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol building. Five people, including a Capitol Police officer, died in the mayhem.
The events were preceded by a rally of Trump supporters. The Democrats have insisted that Donald Trump's claims of voter fraud incited the so-called "insurrection" at the Capitol.
The former POTUS, who has repeatedly claimed the 2020 presidential election was "stolen" from him, and suggested voting machines had been manipulated, was accused of "inciting" the violence. Despite vehemently rejecting the accusations, Donald Trump was later impeached by the US House of Representatives on charges of incitement to insurrection. He later managed to evade conviction in the Senate.
The Democrats established the House Select Committee investigating the 6 January riot at the US Capitol on 30 June after Republicans blocked a bill for an independent commission on the matter.
U.S. President Donald Trump departs with White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows from the White House to travel to North Carolina for an election rally, in Washington, U.S., October 21, 2020. - Sputnik International, 1920, 15.12.2021
What's Behind House 6 January Select Committee's 'Manhunt' for Meadows, Bannon, & Other Trump Aides?
The panel has been gathering information on the planning process behind the events on that day, subpoenaing dozens of phone records from people linked to the "Stop the Steal" rally that preceded the riot.
Dozens of former Trump staffers have also been subpoenaed for their testimony, with many refusing to cooperate. Some, like former chief adviser to Trump, Steve Bannon, and his ex-chief of staff, Mark Meadows, were subsequently held in contempt of Congress.
On Thursday, Trump himself asked the Supreme Court to block a demand for White House records from the House Select Committee, after two weeks earlier two lower courts rejected the argument that they were protected by executive privilege.
Separate lawsuits have been filed by InfoWars host Alex Jones and former Trump National Security Adviser Michael Flynn in a bid to avoid subpoenas for their phone records by the House committee.
Republicans argue the panel probing the 6 January events is no more than a political witch hunt.
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