Pat Cipollone, former White House counsel, will testify Friday before Jan. 6 committee
Cipollone would become the highest ranking aide in Trump's White House to testify, after former chief of staff Mark Meadows defied his subpoena while top Justice Department officials testified.
- Cipollone threatened to resign if Trump replaced his attorney general.
- Cipollone urged Trump not to visit the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
- Committee members sought Cipollone's testimony because of his proximity to Trump at key times.
WASHINGTON – Former White House counsel Pat Cipollone agreed to give sworn testimony Friday to the House committee investigating the Capitol attack Jan. 6, 2021, The Associated Press reported.
Cipollone negotiated the testimony after he was subpoenaed, following testimony from other White House aides and Justice Department officials. The testimony will be delivered in private, but transcribed.
Cipollone had called a strategy that former President Donald Trump’s lawyers developed to reject electors from contested states a “murder-suicide pact,” according to testimony from other White House witnesses.
Cipollone also threatened to resign during an Oval Office meeting Jan. 3, 2021, when Trump threatened to replace acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen with Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Clark, who was more willing to pursue claims of election fraud. Trump relented when top officials from the Justice Department and counsel’s office all threatened to resign.
Cipollone urged Trump not to join the mob marching to the Capitol after his speech on Jan. 6 because of the risk he could be charged with “every crime imaginable,” according to former Trump aide Cassidy Hutchinson, who testified June 28.
Committee members, such as Vice Chair Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., repeatedly called for Cipollone’s testimony to clarify what Trump was doing before and during the Capitol attack.
Under the negotiated agreement, Cipollone agreed to a private, transcribed interview. The agreement is similar to the one former White House counsel Don McGahn reached with the House Judiciary Committee during the investigation of Russian interference alleged in the 2016 election.