Washington, U.S. | Xinhua | The U.S. House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot on Thursday asked the Supreme Court to reject former President Donald Trump’s bid to block the release of his White House’s records requested in the ongoing probe.
Lawyers for the select committee in a brief filed with the high court argued against Trump’s claim of executive privilege over a trove of records that the panel considered to be necessary for their investigation into the deadly attack.
“The Select Committee’s work is of the highest importance and urgency: investigating one of the darkest episodes in our nation’s history, a deadly assault on the United States Capitol and Congress, and an unprecedented disruption of the peaceful transfer of power from one President to the next,” read the legal document.
“The investigation is indispensable to the Select Committee’s ability to propose remedial measures to ensure the peaceful transfer of power and prevent future attacks on our democratic institutions,” it said.
Having lost his case in lower courts in Washington, D.C., Trump appealed to the Supreme Court last week, asking it to stop the National Archives from transferring the over 700 pages worth of records to the select committee.
The former president in his petition asked the justices to fully examine the legal and constitutional issues surrounding Congress’ request for the records, adding that while the review is underway, the records’ transfer should be put on hold.
Trump’s legal team has been arguing that the select committee’s request for the records lack a legitimate legislative purpose. It said in a brief filed with the Supreme Court on Wednesday that the panel “is looking to find evidence that could provide the basis for a criminal referral to the United States Department of Justice,” calling the lawmakers’ effort an “inquisitorial tribunal” whose “purpose is outside of any of Congress’s legislative powers.”
The select committee is reportedly eyeing to publish an interim report containing initial findings by the summer of 2022, with the final report expected to be delivered in the fall.