Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), chair of the House committee investigating the January 6 Capitol riot, said the committee does not expect to call former President Donald Trump or former Vice President Mike Pence as witnesses, Politico reporter Kyle Cheney said on Twitter on Tuesday, marking a shift from earlier statements that Trump was not off-limits from the committee's subpoenas.
Thompson remarked it was unclear whether speaking to Trump would shed any new light on evidence already obtained by the committee, Cheney tweeted .
Thompson said that, though the committee doesn't plan to call Pence as a witness, it is in talks with representatives for Pence, according to Cheney.
These comments marked a shift in tone from October, when Thompson told CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer that "nobody is off limits" from the committee's subpoenas.
Thompson's reported remarks came four days after the committee subpoenaed Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and four other House Republicans who had declined to appear voluntarily—the committee's first public subpoenas to members of Congress.
In an interview with the Washington Post , Trump declined to say if he would be willing to meet with the committee.
Trump has dismissed the committee as a Democrat-led plot with the sole objective of preventing him from running for president again. Nonetheless, Donald Trump Jr. , Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner have voluntarily answered the committee's questions. Other Trump associates have been less cooperative, such as former Trump lawyer John Eastman , who appeared under subpoena and reportedly invoked the Fifth Amendment 146 times while answering questions. The committee recommended criminal contempt charges against former Trump Administration communications staffer Daniel Scavino Jr. and trade advisor Peter Navarro after they refused to comply with the committee's subpoenas. Many witnesses called by the committee were allegedly in contact with Trump during critical moments on the day of the riot—like McCarthy , who claimed Trump told him he admitted some responsibility for the riot. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), one of only two Republicans on the committee, has urged the committee to keep its focus on Trump's role in the riot, the Washington Post reported Tuesday. Trump has repeatedly tried to block the committee's access to documents from his administration. However, his attempts to assert executive privilege over the documents have been rejected by the Supreme Court and other judicial authorities .
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