The select committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection will seek electronic communications records related to the attack, including from members of Congress, the panel’s chair said Monday.
Select Committee Chair Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) told reporters his panel would be sending letters to telecommunications companies and social media companies, requesting they preserve relevant documents. CNN first reported the planned requests.
“I won't give you the names (of the companies). But, you know, in terms of telecom companies, they're the ones that pretty much you already know, maybe the networks, the social media platforms, those kinds of things,” he told reporters.
“We’ll look at all records at some point. It won't be tomorrow,” he said. The letters would seek voluntary compliance with their investigation before the committee would issue subpoenas, he said.
Thompson confirmed that members of Congress could be included in the records requests, and that there were “several hundred” people the committee sought to contact as part of the wide-ranging probe.
Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), a committee member, told POLITICO a “set of preservation requests are going out — just to hold all relevant documents.”
The phone records could shed light on a series of phone calls between Republican members of Congress and former President Donald Trump on Jan. 6. Both Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy spoke to Trump that day.
Some panel members have said Jordan and other Republican members of Congress are akin to “material witnesses” to the insurrection.
The House Oversight Committee had previously probed the involvement of social media companies like Parler, subsequently uncovering the company's warnings to the FBI about threats of violence before the attack.
The select committee has not yet scheduled another public hearing since its emotional testimony with officers who responded to the insurrection, though Thompson said the panel would make a decision on the focus of its next hearing “before the week’s up.”
Betsy Woodruff Swan contributed to this report.
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