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Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Who is Steven Engel and why is he testifying at the January 6 hearing?

Stephen Engel, a senior Justice Department official who resisted President Donald Trump’s attempts to overturn the 2020 election results, is due to testify June 23 before a House committee investigating the January 6 attack.

Engel is to testify in person before the commission, along with Trump’s former Acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen and former Acting Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue.

As Assistant Attorney General of the Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Counsel, Engel ran an office that provided legal advice to the president and executive branch agencies during the Trump administration.

Engel told Trump that he and other senior Justice Department officials would step down if he fired Rosen and named Jeffrey Clark as acting attorney general, according to Rosen’s Oct. 13, 2021 testimony before a Jan. 6 House committee. Clark devised a plan for the department to send out letters to the states that lost Trump, directing them to nominate an alternate list of voters who would vote for Trump. Clark outlined the plan to Trump, who threatened to replace Rosen with Clark unless Rosen signed his name on the letters and mailed them, according to the Senate court report.

According to the report, Rosen refused to cooperate with the plan.

The exchange took place during a meeting at the White House on January 3, 2021. In the end, Trump decided not to fire Rosen, and the letters were never sent.

According to Rosen, Engel told the president, “If you replace Jeff Rosen with Jeff Clark and send this letter [to Georgia]I wouldn’t have a choice. I would have to resign.”

Clarke, who at the time was in charge of the Justice Department’s civilian division, “said to the President on numerous occasions that if he was put in this position, he would conduct real investigations that he believed would uncover widespread fraud,” Donoghue said. This is stated in the testimony of the committee dated October 1.

Donoghue said Engel told the president that if all senior Justice Department officials left, Clark would be left with a “cemetery” in the ministry.

To learn more about the key participants in the January 6 committee hearing, click here.

World Nation News Desk
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