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Cheney says Jan. 6 panel will 'contemplate a subpoena" if Thomas doesn't volunteer to testify

Thomas is a conservative activist, wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas

Published: July 25, 2022 9:44am

Updated: July 25, 2022 11:02am

The Democrat-led House committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot is considering a subpoena for Virginia "Ginni" Thomas, the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, if she declines to voluntarily testify, say panel co-Chairperson Rep. Liz Cheney.

The Wyoming Republican made the statement Sunday on CNN’s "State of the Union," saying the panel will "contemplate a subpoena" if Thomas doesn’t want to meet with the committee over her alleged role in advocating to overturn the 2020 presidential election results.

Cheney also said the committee is talking to Thomas' attorney, who said in a letter to the committee last month that he wants more information about why members want to speak with his client, according to CNN.

The lawyer said that he "does not believe there is "a sufficient basis to speak with" Thomas.

"We certainly hope that she will agree to come in voluntarily, but the committee is fully prepared to contemplate a subpoena if she does not," Cheney said. "It's very important for us to speak with her and as I said, I hope she will agree to do so voluntarily but I'm sure we will contemplate a subpoena if she won't."

The committee has email correspondence between Thomas, a conservative activist, and former President Trump election attorney John Eastman. It also has texts between her and Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows. 

In a departure from House norms, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi last year rejected two of the five House Republican picks for the panel, prompting House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) to pull all five of his party's choices from the committee. Pelosi then handpicked two anti-Trump Republicans to join the seven Democrats on the committee.

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