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Donald Trump formally subpoenaed by Congress, deposition set for mid-November

Reports close to Trump say he might be willing to testify if hearing is live

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A photo of then-President Donald Trump in the Oval Office during a House select committee hearing.

A photo of then-President Donald Trump in the Oval Office with his coat still on as he returns from speaking on the Ellipse on Jan. 6, 2021, as the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol holds a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 13, 2022. In an extraordinary step, the House Jan. 6 committee on Thursday voted to subpoena Trump.

Jacquelyn Martin, Associated Press

The House Select Committee investigating the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021, formally issued a subpoena Friday to former President Donald Trump. The subpoena requires Trump to turn over documents related to the Capitol riot and his attempts to overturn the 2020 presidential election, and to appear for questioning under oath on Nov. 14.

“As demonstrated in our hearings,” reads the committee’s letter attached to the subpoena, “we have assembled overwhelming evidence, including from dozens of your former appointees and staff, that you personally orchestrated and oversaw a multi-part effort to overturn the 2020 presidential election and to obstruct the peaceful transition of power.”

The committee voted unanimously last week to subpoena the former president after a 212-hour public hearing where the accusations against Trump were laid out. 

Committee chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., told the press he feels the panel has a duty to question the former president. “He is required to answer for his actions. He’s required to answer to those police officers who put their lives and bodies on the line to defend our democracy. He’s required to answer to those millions of Americans whose votes he wanted to throw out as part of his scheme to remain in power.”

Trump sent a 14-page letter to the committee last Friday, stating in the opening line, “The presidential election of 2020 was rigged and stolen!” His letter didn’t refer to whether he would comply with the subpoena. However, sources close to Trump said he might be willing to testify to the House panel, but only if the proceedings are live, according to media reports.

The committee’s subpoena concludes saying the documents and testimony are vital to help them determine what legislative recommendations to submit so “no future president could succeed at anything even remotely similar to the unlawful steps you took to overturn the election.”