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Monday, November 29, 2021

Alex Jones and Roger Stone are summoned to court by a House committee on January 6.

FARNOUSH AMIRI

WASHINGTON (AP) – A committee investigating the January 6 Capitol uprising served subpoenas to five more individuals on Monday, including former President Donald Trump’s ally Roger Stone and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, as lawmakers deepened investigations into the rallies that preceded the deadly attack. …

The subpoenas include demands for documents and testimony from Stone and Jones, as well as three people accused of organizing and promoting two January 6 rallies.

“The special committee is looking for information about the rallies and the subsequent march to the Capitol, which has grown into a violent mob attacking the Capitol and threatening our democracy,” said Mississippi Rep. Benny Thompson, chairman of the Democratic Commission. “We need to know who organized, planned, paid for and received funds associated with these events, and what kind of connections the organizers had with officials in the White House and Congress.”

The subpoenas, issued on Monday, are the latest in a wide network that a House commission assembled in an attempt to investigate the deadly day when a group of Trump supporters, fueled by his false claims of a stolen election, brutally attacked police and broke into a building. Capitol to interrupt witnessing of Democrat Joe Biden’s victory.

The committee has already interviewed more than 150 people in government, social media and law enforcement, including some of Trump’s former aides who have collaborated. The group called over 20 witnesses to court, and most of them, including several partners who helped plan the massive Stop Theft rally on the morning of January 6, made it clear that they would cooperate.

Stone was found guilty in an investigation by Special Attorney Robert Mueller for Russia of lying to Congress about his attempts to gather inside information about Russia-hacked Democratic emails released by WikiLeaks ahead of the 2016 presidential election. Trump subsequently pardoned him.

The House agenda notes that Stone spoke at rallies the day before the Capitol uprising and used members of the far-right Oath Keepers group as personal guards while in Washington.

In a statement, Stone said he had yet to familiarize himself with the details of the agenda, but called any claims of his involvement that day “categorically false.”

“I said over and over that I didn’t know in advance about the events that took place in the Capitol that day,” said the conservative provocateur. “After the summons is served and after my lawyer has reviewed the requests, I will decide how I will proceed.”

The House Commission also wants to hear from Jones, where Thompson said the conspiracy theorist and radio host helped organize the January 6 Ellipse rally that preceded the uprising. Thompson’s letter says Jones has repeatedly promoted Trump’s allegations of election fraud, urged his listeners to come to Washington for a rally, and walked from Ellipse to the Capitol. Thompson also wrote that Jones “made statements implying that you were aware of President Trump’s plans for the rally.”

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A lawyer who previously represented Jones did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The other three subpoenas were issued to Dustin Stockton, Jennifer Lawrence, and Taylor Budovich for their alleged involvement in promoting and organizing a series of rallies following the 2020 presidential election that contributed to the spread of false information regarding election results, including the Ellipse rally that preceded the presidential election. violent attack on the Capitol.

Stockton and Lawrence were key leaders of the Stop Theft movement after the elections and helped organize the January 6 rally in advance of the Capitol attack. The couple said they planned to testify and hand over the documents requested by the committee.

Both denied violence. Stockton said that he had previously approached the committee voluntarily asking for cooperation.

“We were shocked and terrified by what happened on the 6th,” Lawrence told The Associated Press on Monday. “We need to figure out what really happened so that we can move forward as a country.”

Budovich, who is now Trump’s top spokesman, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The election results were confirmed by government officials and upheld by the court. Trump’s Attorney General William Barr, with the help of the Justice Department, found no evidence of widespread fraud to disprove the results.

The committee is seeking information from Stockton and his fiancée Lawrence, who they say were involved in organizing some of the rallies. The committee argues that Stockton was so concerned that the rally at Ellipse could lead to “possible danger” that it brought those concerns to White House chief of staff Mark Meadows.

The commission has already demanded documents and testimony from several other Trump advisers – some cooperated and some did not. Steve Bannon, a longtime Trump ally, was indicted on two counts of criminal contempt of Congress on November 12 after he withdrew a House committee agenda. The committee gives Meadows more time to comply with the subpoena before the committee moves forward with a contempt vote.

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Associated Press contributors Eric Tucker and Nomaan Merchant of Washington and Jill Colvin of New York contributed to this report.

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