U.S. Capitol riot probe to release final report on assault by Trump backers
WASHINGTON, Dec 21 (Reuters) – The US Congressional body investigating the January 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol concludes its work on Wednesday with a final report outlining its case that former President Donald Trump should be charged with incitement to death insurrection.
The report, to be published online, is expected to be more than 1,000 pages and is based on nearly 1,200 interviews over 18 months and hundreds of thousands of documents, as well as the rulings of more than 60 federal and state courts.
The report lists 17 specific findings, discusses the legal implications of actions by Trump and some of his associates, and includes criminal referrals to the Trump Justice Department and others. It also identifies legislative recommendations to deter another such attack.
The report’s release comes two days after the committee asked federal prosecutors to indict the former Republican president on four felonies, including obstruction and insurgency, for attempting to overturn the results of the November 2020 election and attacking the seat of government trigger.
“Instead of fulfilling his constitutional obligation to ‘ensure the faithful execution of the law,’ President Trump instead planned to overturn the election result,” the Democrat-led House Select Committee said in a 160-page summary of the report released Monday.
Trump delivered a fiery speech to supporters near the White House on the morning of January 6 and publicly rebuked his Vice President Mike Pence for not following his plan to reject ballots in favor of Democrat Joe Biden. Trump then waited for hours to make a public statement while thousands of his supporters rampaged through the Capitol, attacking police and threatening to hang Pence.
After Trump’s fellow Republicans took control of the House on Jan. 3, the Democrat-led special committee has to wrap up its work, and it ended with a bang. Monday marked the first time in US history that a congressional committee referred a former president to criminal charges.
“This committee is nearing the end of its work. But as a country we remain in strange and uncharted waters. We have never seen a president of the United States make a violent attempt to block the transfer of power,” Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson, chair of the Jan. 6 committee, said Monday.
The committee’s request to indict Trump does not compel federal prosecutors to act but comes as a special counsel is overseeing two other federal investigations into Trump related to his attempt to overturn his 2020 election defeat by Biden and the removal of classified files from the White House.
Reporting by Patricia Zengerle; Editing by Scott Malone and Cynthia Osterman
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