The judge presiding over the case involving Donald Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election on Tuesday denied the former president’s request to subpoena several people for material garnered by the House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection.
Judge Tanya Chutkan ruled Trump “has not sufficiently justified his requests” for records that Trump’s lawyers Todd Blanche and John Lauro last month said were identified as missing from the archived records of the committee, including video recordings of transcribed interviews.
The subpoena was addressed to seven people, including Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-Ga.), who chairs the subcommittee on oversight and has previously claimed the panel “did not transfer or archive numerous records,” and Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), the Jan. 6 committee chairman, who has dismissed those suggestions.
“Consistent with guidance from the Office of the Clerk and other authorities, the Select Committee did not archive temporary committee records that were not elevated by the Committee’s actions, such as use in hearings or official publications, or those that did not further its investigative actions,” Thompson said in July.
Still, Trump’s attorneys argued their request has merit.
“Needless to say, there is significant overlap between the Select Committee’s investigation and this case, and there is a strong likelihood that individuals discussed in the Missing Records could be called as trial witnesses,” Blanche and Lauro said last month.
Chutkan denied Trump’s motion, saying the former president hasn’t met the burden of proof.
“Defendant does not state with any specificity the information that he seeks in those records, repeating only that it is important and related to the events and people associated with the Select Committee’s work and therefore the January 6, 2021 attack,” Chutkan wrote in a court filing.
“The broad scope of the records that Defendant seeks, and his vague description of their potential relevance, resemble less ‘a good faith effort to obtain identified evidence’ than they do ‘a general ‘fishing expedition’ that attempts to use the [Rule 17(c) subpoena] as a discovery device,” Chutkan added.
The case is currently scheduled to go on trial on March 4.
Trump has pleaded not guilty to all charges.