Former White House official Steve Bannon tore into the “gutless” January 6 Select Committee for not testifying during his trial Friday.
A Washington, D.C., jury convicted Bannon in two charges of contempt of Congress for ignoring a subpoena from the January 6 Select Committee.
“I want to thank the jury for the effort they did, the judge, particularly the court administration here, everybody,” Bannon told reporters. “I only have one disappointment and that is the gutless members of that show trial committee, the J6 committee, didn’t have the guts to come down here and testify in open court.”
Bannon faces between 60 days and two years in jail and a fine between $200 and $200,000, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced.
The committee chair, Democratic Mississippi Rep. Bennie Thompson, said in a July 14 letter that he would be willing to testify in Bannon’s trial if he handed over documents the Select Committee has requested for over a year, according to Politico.
“The July 9, 2022, outreach to the Select Committee by you on Mr. Bannon’s behalf does not change the fact that Mr. Bannon failed to follow that process and failed to comply with the select committee’s subpoena prior to the House referral of the contempt resolution concerning Mr Bannon’s defiance of the subpoena,” Thompson wrote, according to Politico.
Kristin Amerling, the chief counsel of the committee, said Bannon would not turn over any documents despite his sudden willingness to cooperate, Politico reported. (RELATED: Biden Says DOJ Should Prosecute Former Trump Officials Defying Jan. 6 Subpoenas, Prompts Damage Control From Admin)
Justice Department prosecutors warned that Bannon would politicize the trial, the outlet reported. His defense attorney, Evan Corcoran, criticized the House of Representatives for playing a political game against Bannon.
The former White House official made similar comments about the committee outside the courthouse Tuesday, claiming the committee lacked guts for not testifying and called Thompson a “disgrace.”
He accused Thompson, without evidence, of lying about a COVID-19 diagnosis while talking to reporters Wednesday, the outlet reported.
“Why is Bennie Thompson not here defending his committee, the show trial, the Moscow show trial of the 1930s? Why is he not here in person?” the former Trump adviser said.
Bannon initially attempted to assert executive privilege when subpoenaed by Congress in September 2021. The House, including eight Republicans, voted to hold Bannon in contempt. Congress also subpoenaed former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, former Deputy Chief of Staff Dan Scavino, and Kashyap Patel, the chief of staff for then-acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller.