Former Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows is suing Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol as he faces a likely contempt referral for refusing to cooperate with the panel.
In a civil complaint filed Wednesday afternoon, Meadows’s lawyers said the select committee does not have the authority to issue the subpoenas directed at him or obtain his phone records from a third party and that President Biden’s refusal to assert executive privilege opens constitutional questions that should be decided through legal action.
“As a result, Mr. Meadows, a witness, has been put in the untenable position of choosing between conflicting privilege claims that are of constitutional origin and dimension and having to either risk enforcement of the subpoena issued to him, not merely by the House of Representatives, but through actions by the Executive and Judicial Branches, or, alternatively, unilaterally abandoning the former president’s claims of privileges and immunities,” the complaint reads. “Thus, Mr. Meadows turns to the courts to say what the law is.”
The lawsuit says Meadows believed the committee would “act in good faith” until he learned over the weekend the lawmakers had subpoenaed Verizon for his personal phone records. The telecommunications company told Meadows in a letter dated Saturday that it would comply with the committee’s subpoena by Dec. 15 unless a court ordered otherwise.
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