The U.S. House of Representatives select committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection voted unanimously to recommend charging Steve Bannon with criminal contempt of Congress for defying its subpoena to testify before the committee. Bannon has ignored a subpoena to testify before Congress, making him the first target of the Jan. 6 investigation to face potential legal penalties for refusing to cooperate.
- In the report recommending that the House find Bannon in contempt, the committee referred to comments made by Bannon in "War Room," his far-right radio show/podcast, on Jan. 5. Bannon said, "all hell is going to break loose tomorrow."
- Investigators claim that Bannon coordinated efforts with Trump allies, including Rudy Giuliani and Roger Stone, in the lead-up to the Capitol attack.
- On Monday, Bannon's attorney sought to delay the House committee vote by citing an ongoing lawsuit by former President Trump that seeks to protect documents sought by the committee.
- The request was denied and the vote proceeded as expected.
Representative Bennie Thompson (D-MS), chairman of the select committee, said:
- "It is essential that we get Mr Bannon’s factual and complete testimony in order to get a full accounting of the violence of January 6th and its causes."
- Bannon has had a strange and unexpected political career in the last five years.
- He left his post as head of the far-right Breitbart News website in August 2016 to lead Donald Trump's presidential campaign.
- He was a senior advisor in the Trump White House for less than a year, leaving in August 2017.
- He went on to spend the next years supporting far-right causes across Europe, attempting to build connections between various nationalist movements and right-wing populist parties.
- In 2020, he started the "War Room," which became a major hub for false conspiracy theories about electoral fraud in the aftermath of the Presidential election.