The Lower House of the United States, with a Democratic majority, voted on Tuesday in favor of declaring in contempt Mark Meadows, who was Donald Trump’s chief of staff (2017-2021) at the time of the assault on the Capitol and who left to cooperate with the legislative committee investigating the event.
The plenary session of the House, with a Democratic majority, carried forward the resolution against Meadows with 222 votes in favor and 208 against.
Now, the accusations against Meadows go to the Department of Justice, which must decide whether to convene a grand jury to formally charge him with criminal contempt.
The contempt charge carries a maximum penalty of one year in jail and a $ 100,000 fine, according to the Congressional Investigative Service.
On Monday night the committee investigating the assault on the Capitol declared Meadows in contempt and revealed that Trump’s eldest son, Don Jr., and personalities from the conservative Fox network were appalled by the attack on the legislative headquarters.
Specifically, both Don Jr. and three Fox hosts sent text messages to Meadows asking him to persuade Trump to take the attack seriously and ask his followers to leave the Capitol.
“We need a speech in the Oval Office. You have to lead now. This has gone too far and got out of hand,” Don Jr. said in a message to Meadows.
The text messages, read aloud during the hearing by Republican Liz Cheney, are part of a package of 9,000 documents that Meadows provided to the committee before changing her mind and stopping to collaborate.
Meadows decided to stop cooperating on the grounds that his work at the White House should remain secret because Trump had invoked “executive privilege, “ a doctrine that allows the president of the United States to prevent the dissemination of certain materials.
The far-right Steve Bannon tried to use that same argument without success and was found in contempt by the House of Representatives so that, on November 12, a federal grand jury indicted him on two counts of contempt.
The committee investigating the assault on the Capitol was created by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Democrat Nancy Pelosi, and is made up of a majority of Democratic congressmen, although there are two Republican members – Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger – who are at odds with Trump.
Your mission is to investigate why the assault occurred, who was responsible and what can be done to prevent another similar event.
On January 6, some 10,000 people – most of them Trump sympathizers – marched towards the Capitol and about 800 broke into the building to prevent the victory of the new US president, Joe Biden, from being ratified, over the Republican candidate in the elections of November 2020.
Five people died and about 140 officers were attacked.