Peter Navarro pleads not guilty to contempt of Congress charges

His camp has sought to postpone the trial until 2023, after the midterms elections

Updated: June 17, 2022 - 3:25pm

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Peter Navarro, a former White House advisor to President Donald Trump, on Friday pleaded not guilty to charges of contempt of Congress after defying a subpoena from the Democrat-led Jan. 6 committee.

A federal grand jury in early June indicted Navarro on two counts of contempt after he refused to testify before the House committee about his role in efforts to overturn the 2020 election results.

The former Trump advisor had represented himself prior to his indictment, the Epoch Times noted, but took on attorneys following the pressing of charges. He had cited executive privilege as justification for ignoring the committee's demands.

U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta set Nov. 17 as the trial's start date, though the prosecutors have indicated a preference to begin sooner.

Navarro's camp, meanwhile, has sought to postpone the trial until 2023, after the midterms elections, in the hopes that constitutional issues surrounding his indictment might be resolved by then. The Biden administration has asserted it can wave Navarro's claim to executive privilege, prompting scrutiny from both his camp and some Democratic voters, among them Harvard Law Professor Emeritus Alan Dershowitz.

"They claim that the current president, Joe Biden, can waive executive privilege that was invoked by the former president. That would mean the end of executive privilege," Dershowitz told Just the News at the time of Navarro's indictment. The Biden administration has put forward the dumbest legal argument I have heard in my almost 60 years of practicing law, the dumbest legal argument."

Navarro's plea comes as the Jan. 6 committee airs primetime hearings this week to showcase the findings of its investigation into the Capitol Riot.

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