Former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows has testified before a grand jury impaneled by Justice Department Special Counsel Jack Smith, suggesting that failed ex-president Donald Trump may wind up being charged for his role in the January 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol, according to the New York Times.
One inquiry is focused on Mr. Trump’s efforts to cling to power after losing the 2020 election, culminating in the attack by a pro-Trump mob on the Capitol during congressional certification of the Electoral College results on Jan. 6, 2021. The other is an investigation into Mr. Trump’s handling of hundreds of classified documents after he left office and whether he obstructed efforts to retrieve them.
It would certainly seem that Meadows is likely to have more information about what took place on Jan. 6 than what may have happened to classified documents the former president took with him to Mar-a-Lago in violation of federal law.
George Terwilliger, an attorney for Meadows, refused to confirm that his client had appeared before Smith’s grand jury.
Meadows has already been instrumental in helping investigators understand what was taking place inside the White House during the final days of the Trump administration, the Times notes.
Mr. Meadows was around for pivotal moments leading up to and after the 2020 election, as Mr. Trump plotted to try to stay in office and thwart Joseph R. Biden Jr. from being sworn in to succeed him. Some of them were described in hundreds of text messages that Mr. Meadows turned over to the House select committee that investigated the Jan. 6 attack at the Capitol before he decided to stop cooperating. Those texts served as a road map for House investigators.
It remains unclear what exactly the special counsel might charge Trump with for his activities surrounding the Capitol insurrection. Recent guilty verdicts against members of the Proud Boys, a domestic terrorist organization, for seditious conspiracy, have led some to suggest that Smith might also seek to prosecute Trump on a similar criminal complaint.