WASHINGTON (AP) – Members of the House of Representatives committee are investigating the Uprising in the Capitol said on Sunday they had uncovered enough evidence to do so Department of Justice to consider an unprecedented criminal charge against former President Donald Trump for search to overturn the results of the 2020 election.
“I would like to see the Justice Department investigate any credible allegations of criminal activity by Donald Trump,” said Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., a committee member who also chairs the House Intelligence Committee. “There are certain actions, parts of these various efforts to overthrow the election, that I don’t see any evidence that the Justice Department is investigating.”
The Committee held its first public hearing last week, as members laid out their case against Trump to show how the defeated president relentlessly pushed his false claims of a rigged election despite several advisers telling him otherwise, and how he ramped up an extraordinary plan to ensure Joe Biden’s victory overthrow.
More evidence is set to be unveiled in hearings this week that will show how Trump and his advisers have made “massive efforts” to spread misinformation and pressured the Justice Department to accept his false claims.
Committee members said Sunday that their key audience as the hearings progress may ultimately be Attorney General Merrick Garland, who must decide whether his department can and should prosecute Trump. They left no doubt as to whether the evidence was sufficient.
“Once the evidence is gathered by the Justice Department, it must make a decision as to whether it can prove beyond a reasonable doubt the president’s guilt or anyone else’s,” Schiff said. “But they need to be investigated when there is credible evidence, which I think is the case.”
Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., said he had no intention of “intimidating” Garland, but noted that the committee had already set out in legal briefs a variety of criminal statutes they believe Trump violated.
“I think he knows, his staff knows, US attorneys know what’s at stake here,” Raskin said. “They know how important it is, but I think they are right to look to the precedents in history as well as to the facts of this case.”
Garland has not indicated how he might proceed, which would be unprecedented and complicated in a political election season in which Trump has openly flirted with the idea of running for president again in 2024. “We will follow the facts wherever they lead,” Garland said in his speech at Harvard University’s inaugural ceremony last month.
A federal judge in California said in a March ruling in a civil case that Trump “more likely” committed a federal crime in an attempt to interfere with the January 6, 2021 congressional count of Electoral College ballots. The judge cited two laws: obstruction of an official proceeding and conspiracy to defraud the United States. Trump has denied any wrongdoing.
Schiff appeared on ABC’s This Week and Raskin spoke on CNN’s State of the Union.
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