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Ex-Trump operative Steve Bannon offers to testify in US investigation into January 6 riots

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WASHINGTON, July 10 (Reuters) – Donald Trump’s former closest adviser Steve Bannon has told the congressional panel investigating the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol attack that he is ready to testify, a change of heart days before he should be tried for contempt of Congress.

In a letter to the committee seen by Reuters, Bannon’s attorney Robert Costello wrote that the former president would waive the claim of executive privilege that Bannon had cited when he refused to appear before the committee. read more

Bannon, a prominent figure in right-wing media circles who served as Trump’s chief strategist in 2017, is scheduled to face two criminal charges on July 18 for contempt for refusing to testify or provide documents. read more

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The attorney’s letter said Bannon preferred to testify in public, but Representative Zoe Lofgren, a committee Democrat, told CNN that the committee usually makes a statement behind closed doors.

“This goes on hour after hour after hour. We want to get all our questions answered. And you can’t do that in a live format,” Lofgren said. “There are a lot of questions we have for him.”

During the hearings of the House of Representatives committee, videotaped fragments of behind-closed-door testimony were shown to the public by witnesses under oath.

Trump is annoyed that none of his supporters testified in defense during the committee hearings that, apart from the trial, focus on the attack by Trump supporters who overturned Congressional certification of Trump’s defeat by Joe Biden in November 2020 want to stop election.

In a letter from Trump to Bannon seen by Reuters, Trump said he was waiving the administrative law because he “saw how unfairly you and others have been treated”.

The House Committee will hold public hearings on Tuesday and Thursday this week. read more

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Reporting by Richard Cowan; Editing by Howard Goller

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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