The House select panel investigating the attack on U.S. Capitol Building is said to be in talks for Pat Cipollone. A former White House counsel, Cipollone advised former President Donald Trump right up until and following the events of January 6, 2020.
According to ABC NewsAccording to the report, sources with inside information about the discussions indicated that the talks included the possibility of Cipollone appearing before a committee on January 6. During its public hearings this Month. Cipollone had previously met with the committee in April, but an appearance this month could give the public a greater understanding of the Trump administration’s response to the attack, as well as the former president’s attempt to overthrow the election using the power of the executive branch.
“Cipollone is a key figure in Trump’s intent and state of mind after the election and before January 6,” MSNBC legal contributor Katie Phang said on Twitter.
It’s still unclear whether Cipollone will testify, as there are numerous questions regarding Trump’s executive privilege claims and what Cipollone, as his White House counsel, can divulge. Indeed, Cipollone has already told investigatorsIf Trump does make an appearance before the committee, his testimony will be limited to discussing Trump’s and his associates’ attempts to use the Department of Justice to make false claims of election fraud.
Cipollone was in West Wing when the attack on Capitol began. After Trump delivered an incendiary address to a crowd full of his loyalistsOutside the White House. Cipollone advised Trump following the attack that he could be subject to civil penalties for the speech he just delivered.
Trump’s former White House counsel was also against him when he suggested that he might preemptively forgive himself and Rudy Giuliani (his personal lawyer at the time) along with Mark Meadows, his then-chief o staff, and Rudy Giuliani. Cipollone responded by telling Trump that such pardons would be obstruction of justice and that it would be a protest if he tried to implement them. Trump eventually backed down.
This wasn’t the only one of Trump’s schemes that Cipollone shut down during the final weeks of the former president’s tenure. A meeting was held at the White House on January 3. Trump hinted at plans to replace then-acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen with DOJ official Jeffrey Clark; at the time, Rosen was refusing to involve the DOJ in investigations that were based on Trump’s unfounded election fraud claims, while Clark was pushing for Trump to order the department to get involved. During that meeting, Cipollone told Trump that if he replaced Rosen with Clark, he’d resign in protest with great fanfare. Trump backed down again.