A federal grand jury charged Peter Navarro, a key former White House advisor to Donald Trump, on two charges of contempt of Congress for violating a subpoena given by the House select committee investigating the January 6 Capitol incident, on Friday.
Who Is Peter Navarro?
Peter Kent Navarro is a writer and economist from the United States. He worked as an Assistant to the President, Director of Trade and Manufacturing Policy, and policy director for the National Defense Production Act under President Trump.
He was formerly a Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of the White House National Trade Council, a freshly formed institution within the White House Office until it was incorporated into the Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy, a new job established by executive order in April 2017.
He is also an associate professor of economics and public policy at the University of California, Irvine’s Paul Merage School of Business, and the writer of Death by China, among other works. Navarro ran for office in San Diego, California, but lost 5 times.
Navarro was a trade hawk in the Trump regime, encouraging Trump to enact trade protectionist measures. Navarro explained his job in Trump’s cabinet by saying that he is there to help “give the underlying data that back up [Trump’s] trade instincts.
And his instincts are always correct in these situations.”Navarro argued in 2018 that no nations would strike back against US tariffs “for the simple reason that we are the most financially rewarding and largest market in the world”; however, other countries did introduce trade sanctions against the US shortly after the tariffs were implemented, resulting in trade wars.
Navarro supported conspiracy theories of vote-rigging after Joe Biden won the 2020 election and Donald Trump refused to acknowledge and was subpoenaed to testify before the House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack in February 2022. When Navarro failed to comply, the Justice Department was notified, and on June 2, 2022, a federal grand jury him on two counts of contempt of Parliament.
What is January 6 Capitol Incident?
The United States Capitol assault of 2021 was a crowd of followers of Republican President Donald J. Trump attacking the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021. The attack took place during a joint session of Congress that was summoned to declare the outcomes of the 2020 u.s. presidential election, in which Trump had defeated Democratic candidate Joe Biden. The incident was commonly viewed as an insurgency or coup attempt d’état because its goal was to prevent a lawful president-elect from taking office.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and other law-enforcement agencies deemed it a domestic terrorist attack as well. The Democratic-led House of Representatives removed from office Trump for “inciting hatred of insurgency” after he delivered a lecture before the invasion in which he urged a large crowd of his followers near the White House to march to the Capitol and viciously resist Congress’s certification of Biden’s triumph, which many in the crowd did (he was subsequently acquitted by the Senate).
Navarro’s charge is the first occasion the Justice Department has filed charges against a Trump White House official who was working in the government on January 6 and engaged in efforts to change the 2020 election results.
The department of justice revealed in a press release that Peter Navarro is facing one count of contempt of Congress for his reluctance to attend a deposition and a second count for his refusal to turn over documents as ordered by the select committee’s subpoena.
Navarro, a former Trump White House assistant who was part in the former president’s illegal conspiracy to have Vice President Mike Pence refuse to declare Joe Biden’s election victory on January 6, was apprehended at the airport he had a pre-planned trip Peter Navarro told magistrate judge.
Navarro’s conviction comes only weeks after the whole House of Representatives voted to hold him in criminal contempt of Congress for completely ignoring the select committee’s subpoena, which was issued in February and demanded records and testimony in connection with the January 6 investigation.
The charge is the latest twist in a string of events involving Navarro’s status as a target of congressional and Justice Department investigators, who slapped him with a grand jury subpoena last week requesting his conversations with Trump.
Navarro submitted an 88-page petition on Tuesday seeking an injunction from a federal judge to prevent the Justice Department from litigating the contempt of Congress referral and to nullify the grand jury subpoena.
It was unclear if the grand jury subpoena – which included records requested in the select committee subpoena – was issued as part of the contempt of Congress prosecution or as part of a different criminal investigation into the former president.
As per a former assistant US attorney who spoke on asked to remain anonymous, the department of justice may be able to access those interactions with Trump as a result of this charge.
The lawsuit’s fate is unknown at this time, and it’s unknown whether the filing prompted the Justice Department to seek that Navarro’s conviction and arrest order be sealed until the warrant was executed on Friday morning in Washington, DC.