Because the first few January 6th Committee public hearings included very little mention of the role that certain House Republicans played in Donald Trump’s election overthrow plot, there has been a lot of pundit buzz about how the committee was “too timid” to go after them.
But as keeps proving to be the case, the pundits have once again been proven wrong, and this committee appears to fear nothing. Today’s first witness, Arizona Republican legislator Rusty Bowers, just testified that Donald Trump and Rudy Giuliani illegally pressured him to decertify his state’s election results. The committee then asked Bowers if anyone else pressured him to do the same. Bowers testified that House Republican Andy Biggs also called him and asked him to decertify the results.
This alone establishes the groundwork for a federal criminal case against Andy Biggs. Bowers, a credible witness who voted for Trump, will clearly be available to testify against Biggs at any criminal trial that the DOJ might bring.
Keep in mind that the DOJ has been doing its own investigation, separate from the January 6th Committee, and mostly in secret. It has been established that the DOJ has had a January 6th grand jury targeting Trump world for at least the past five months. So it’s entirely possible that the DOJ has already talked with Bowers and is already criminally targeting Andy Biggs.
Just because we don’t see most of what’s going on in a criminal probe, it doesn’t mean it’s not happening. For instance, today’s other key witness, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, reportedly testified against Donald Trump to the Fulton County District Attorney’s grand jury weeks ago. So let’s not fall into the trap of thinking that prosecutors are behind what we’re hearing in these hearings.
Udpdate, 2:30pm: the public hearings have now also dragged Republican Senator Ron Johnson into criminal territory. This is all just getting started.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report