Several establishment media companies have filed a petition to join former White House aide Stephen K. Bannon in his legal fight against the Department of Justice (DOJ), which is trying to prevent him from releasing documents on the January 6 riot at the Capitol.
Ironically, the DOJ is trying to suppress documents while prosecuting Bannon for contempt of Congress, a misdemeanor, after refusing to provide documents to the Democrat-dominated US House committee investigating the riot.
Bannon’s attorneys have requested and obtained over 1,000 pages of DOJ documents that may be needed in his defense. But the DOJ wants to prevent him from releasing them, saying it only wants to do so “to present extrajudicial arguments on the merits of the case pending against him and on the validity of the government’s decision to seek a indictment”.
In response, according to the UK Daily mail, a consortium of media organizations filed a motion to intervene in the case – that is, to join as a litigant – and to prevent the court from removing “more than 1,000 pages of testimony, grand jury documents and even staff emails for the Jan. 6 House committee investigating the Capitol Riot “in public view. The media group contends that the court order proposed by the DOJ violates the first amendment.
The Daily mail sarcastically, “The dossier puts the mainstream press squarely on the side of Bannon, who has in the past… attacked the media as the ‘opposition party’.
Bannon is the only person prosecuted by the DOJ in recent years for contempt of Congress. The DOJ has refused to prosecute Lois Lerner, a disgraced IRS official who has targeted conservative groups; as well as former Attorney General Eric Holder, who withheld documents related to the Obama administration’s Operation Fast and Furious, which resulted in the death of U.S. border patrol officer Brian Terry.
After his arrest, Bannon, a former executive chairman of Breitbart News, vowed he would go on the offensive against the DOJ over his lawsuits, vowing to make it “the crime of hell.”
Attorney General Merrick Garland was confirmed amid promises, both by himself and President Joe Biden, that he would not let the Department of Justice (DOJ) become politicized.
During his confirmation hearing in February, he said: “The ministry… if I am confirmed, will be under my protection for the purpose of preventing any kind of partisan or inappropriate motive in carrying out any kind of investigation or pursuit. This is my wish; that’s the only reason I’m willing to do this job.C-SPAN
Since then, Garland has sued Republican-ruled states over ballot integrity laws; called on federal law enforcement to monitor parents who spoke out at school board meetings, after the National School Board Association worked with the White House on a letter addressed to it; and indicted Bannon after Biden himself pressured the DOJ to prosecute.
It is illegal to challenge a lawful subpoena under ordinary circumstances. But Bannon’s lawyers have argued that what the US House Special Committee on the Jan.6 attack seeks is covered by executive privilege and cannot comply without further court rulings. .
The committee ignored the court process and voted to despise Bannon anyway – just as the House impeached Trump, the first time around, for the “serious crime” of defending executive prerogatives in court.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) rejected candidates for Republican leaders to sit on the committee, instead appointing two anti-Trump Republicans, Reps Liz Cheney (R-WY) and Adam Kinzinger (R-IL ).
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent eBook Ni Free ni Fair: The 2020 US Presidential Election. His latest book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni scholarship recipient. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.