The house committee investigating January 6 Capitol Hill riot announced they will be moving forward with criminal contempt proceedings against Trump ally Steve Bannon.
Trump’s former advisor was scheduled to give evidence in front of the committee on Thursday but failed to do so after Bannon’s lawyer informed them he will not be cooperating because ex-president Donald Trump has directed him not to.
He also claimed to have an executive privilege, despite Trump leaving office almost a year ago.
In a statement, Capitol Chairman Bennie Thompson said Bannon “has declined to cooperate with the Select Committee and is instead hiding behind the former President’s insufficient, blanket, and vague statements regarding privileges he has purported to invoke”.
“We reject his position entirely,” Thompson continued. “The Select Committee will not tolerate defiance of our subpoenas, so we must move forward with proceedings to refer Mr. Bannon for criminal contempt.”
The dubious claim prompted people to take to Twitter, and within minutes the “LOCK HIM UP” started trending and inundating feeds.
One said: “WHY ARE THEY WAITING TO VOTE UNTIL NEXT WEEK? CALL THE COMMITTEE TOGETHER AND VOTE NOW! Steve Bannon has openly defied a subpoena from the Jan. 6 House committee.”
While another added: “Steve Bannon is an outlaw and traitor to our Democracy. He should be imprisoned for life.”
Sign up to our new free Indy100 weekly newsletter
Trump continues to claim he can invoke executive privilege to prevent his ex-aides from testifying before the committee. However, legal experts say the privilege belongs to President Joe Biden alone.
Thompson said the next step is for the committee to hold a business meeting on October 19 to move forward with criminal contempt.