Last week, Politico reported that the January 6 Committee is preparing to share twenty transcripts from their investigation. Thus far, no outlet has confirmed which twenty transcripts are in that bunch. But the delay of the Proud Boy leader trial has alleviated the urgency — one that arose out of discovery requirements, not investigative curiosity — behind DOJ’s request for those transcripts. Though unless the Oath Keepers’ bid to move their trial succeeds, there will be some urgency to obtain and turn over transcripts of Stewart Rhodes, Kellye SoRelle, Jason Van Tatenhove, Roger Stone, Alex Jones, and probably Ali Alexander’s depositions.
If that’s the case, though, the number — twenty — is rather curious. That’s because the Committee subpoenaed more than twenty people involved in the scheme and spoke to still more.
First, there are the fourteen people who were subpoenaed back on January 28, the chair and secretary of the fake elector slate for each of seven states.
- Nancy Cottle, Chairperson, Arizona
- Loraine B. Pellegrino, Secretary, Arizona
- David Shafer, Chairperson, Georgia
- Shawn Still, Secretary, Georgia
- Kathy Berden, Chairperson, Michigan
- Mayra Rodriguez, Secretary, Michigan
- Jewll Powdrell, Chairperson, New Mexico
- Deborah W. Maestas, Secretary, New Mexico
- Michael J. McDonald, Chairperson, Nevada
- James DeGraffenreid, Secretary, Nevada
- Bill Bachenberg, Chairperson, Pennsylvania
- Lisa Patton, Secretary, Pennsylvania
- Andrew Hitt, Chairperson, Wisconsin
- Kelly Ruh, Secretary, Wisconsin
Of these fourteen people, DOJ is reported to have obtained warrants targeting McDonald and DeGraffenreid and included Cottle, Pellegrino, and Shafer in subpoenas, and probably also the Michigan electors.
In addition, there were six people subpoenaed in February. Here’s how the Committee described them:
Michael A. Roman and Gary Michael Brown served, respectively, as the Director and Deputy Director of Election Day Operations for former President Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign. They reportedly participated in efforts to promote allegations of fraud in the November 2020 election and encourage state legislators to appoint false “alternate” slates of electors.
Douglas V. Mastriano was part of a plan to arrange for an “alternate” slate of electors from Pennsylvania for former President Trump and reportedly spoke with President Trump about post-election activities.
Laura Cox reportedly witnessed Rudy Giuliani pressure state lawmakers to disregard election results in Michigan and say that certifying the election results would be a “criminal act.”
Mark W. Finchem advanced unsubstantiated claims about the election and helped organize an event in Phoenix, Arizona on November 30th, 2020 at which former President Trump’s legal team and others spoke and advanced unproven claims of election and voter fraud. He was in Washington on January 6th, 2021 and stated that he had evidence to deliver to Vice President Pence in an effort to postpone the awarding of electors.
Kelli Ward reportedly spoke to the former President and members of his staff about election certification issues in Arizona and acted to transmit documents claiming to be an “alternate” Electoral College elector from Arizona.
Then there are others the Committee is known to have interviewed who show up on subpoenas from Thomas Windom’s DOJ investigation:
The Committee also sent the following people, also included in the Windom legal process, subpoenas and presumably interviewed them:
Finally, there are those with knowledge of the scheme whose depositions have shown up in Committee hearings, including, but not limited to the fourth hearing, which focused on The Big Lie (again, I’ve linked to those who received a formal subpoena).
- Cleta Mitchell
- Rusty Bowers, AZ House Speaker
- Bill Stepien, Trump campaign manager
- Matt Morgan, Trump campaign lawyer
- Jocelyn Benson, MI Secretary of State
- Mike Shirkey, MI Senate Majority Leader who visited the White House
- Angela McCallum, Trump campaign staffer
- Robert Sinners, Trump campaign staffer
- Brian Cutler, PA House Speaker
- Cassidy Hutchinson, who testified that discussions about fake electors started in November
- Ronna McDaniel, GOP Chair
Mark Meadows, of course, was also key to the fake elector plot, but blew off a subpoena.
So the Committee subpoenaed at least thirty people who played roles in the fake elector schemes, with only Meadows known to have entirely blown off the subpoena, and also interviewed people like Justin Clark (Trump’s election lawyer, not the former DOJ official) who are also included on DOJ subpoenas.
I raise all this for several reasons.
I’m beginning an attempt to lay out the overlap (or not) between the various investigations, including Fani Willis’ Fulton County investigation, which has expanded to include the fake electors as well. The three investigations seem to be adopting fairly incompatible approaches, and that may create a conflict in the weeks ahead. This is a first pass at laying out the overlapping scope of the known Committee and DOJ investigations, which I hope leads others to correct and add to this effort.
But I started the effort when I realized that depositions of almost none of the fake electors themselves have appeared in the Committee hearings yet.
Just one, Andrew Hitt, was quoted in the January 6 Committee hearing focused on the Big Lie. Hitt claimed that the Wisconsin fake electors would only be used if a court ruled in favor of the state-based challenges to the election.
I was told that these would only count if a court ruled in our favor. So that would have been using our electors — well, it would have been using our electors in ways that we weren’t told about and we wouldn’t have supported.
Mind you, the Committee’s public focus was on those who rejected Trump’s attempts at fraud, even those who, like Laura Cox, had supported other schemes, like unnecessary audits. So it may well be that the transcripts of greatest interest to DOJ are those from depositions that were not shown publicly.
Or, it’s possible DOJ’s priorities have entirely changed, and they focused on other investigative prongs.