(CNN) — Nearly two years after the violent attack on the United States Capitol, the House committee tasked with finding out what really happened is about to show its cards.
The panel will hold its last public meeting on Monday, after which its full report will be released on Wednesday. Unlike many previous meetings, this Monday is a working meeting and not a hearing, as no witnesses are expected to testify.
And while we won’t know everything until the Jan. 6 commission appears, here’s what to expect, what isn’t, and where it could lead.
What will the last public meeting bring?
This Monday’s public meeting, scheduled for 1:00 p.m. ET, is expected to see the panel announce that it will refer at least three criminal charges against former President Donald Trump to the Justice Department, including:
- obstruction of an official proceeding
- Conspiracy to defame the central government
An aide said on Sunday that the commission would publish an executive summary of the inquiry report on Monday after the meeting. The final report, to be released two days later, will provide the rationale for the probe panel to recommend charges.
because now? Republicans could disband the panel once they take control of the House in January.
What is a criminal referral?
A referral represents a recommendation for the Department of Justice to investigate and consider prosecuting individuals. But a referral does not in any way oblige federal prosecutors to pursue such a case, so any move the panel makes on Jan. 6 to approve the referral will be largely symbolic.
The federal investigation, now led by special counsel Jack Smith, is looking into Trump in his broader investigation on Jan. 6, 2021, and it appears that Justice Department investigators are already looking into the conduct that the select committee uncovered. Is.
But whether the department presses charges will depend on whether the facts and evidence support the indictment, said Attorney General Merrick Garland, who will make the final decision on charges.
What are these alleged crimes based on?
“It is an offense to aid or take part in any rebellion or insurrection against the authority of the United States or the laws.”
The judges used the term “insurgency” on January 6 to describe the attack on Congress’s certification of the 2020 presidential election. But the Justice Department has chosen not to bring that charge in hundreds of its riot cases at the United States Capitol.
Instead, prosecutors have relied on criminal laws relating to violence, obstruction of official proceedings, and, in some limited cases, seditious conspiracy. In such a situation, the House Select Committee referring to impeachment against Trump would be a big problem.
For obstruction of official proceedings and conspiracy to defraud the federal government, lawmakers can rely on the opinion of a federal judge in California, who wrote earlier this year that there was evidence that Trump and his associates were Conspiracy to defraud and obstruct the Government. an official action.
US District Judge David O. Carter ruled in a dispute over whether the House could access certain emails sent to Trump’s former attorney John Eastman. The judge cited federal government emails as evidence of a conspiracy to defraud, saying that Trump knew that some of the voter fraud claims being made in court were false.
In explaining his finding of evidence of obstruction, the judge pointed to emails that showed the Trump team was considering filing a lawsuit not to obtain valid legal relief, but to interfere with Congressional proceedings. Was getting it done.
What about Trump’s allies?
Democratic Representative Adam Schiff, a member of the select committee, said Sunday that the panel is considering how to hold accountable GOP lawmakers who defied their subpoenas.
“We will also consider what is an appropriate remedy for members of Congress who ignore a subpoena from Congress, as well as evidence that is very relevant to our investigation,” the California Democrat told CNN’s Jake Tapper. and why we wanted to bring them.” On the “Union State”.
Schiff said, “It will be something we will consider tomorrow.”
These congressional mechanisms may include censure and referral to the House Ethics Committee. (Democratic Rep. Benny Thompson of Mississippi, chairman of the Jan. 6 committee, previously said the panel could issue five to six more categories of referrals in addition to the DOJ’s criminal ones.)
Five House Republicans were summoned for the Jan. 6 panel: GOP leader Kevin McCarthy, and Reps. Jim Jordan of Ohio, Moe Brooks of Alabama, Andy Biggs of Arizona and Scott Perry of Pennsylvania.
CNN previously reported that the panel is also considering criminal referrals for several close Trump aides, including Eastman, former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, former Justice Department official Jeffrey Clark and former Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani. Are included. , according to several sources.
Another source then warned that, although names were being considered, they still had to be discussed before they were finalised.