Steve Bannon, a former White House strategist and ally of former President Donald Trump, has told the House committee investigating the January 6, 2021 Capitol riots that he is now willing to testify, The Associated Press reported on Sunday.
Bannon’s turnabout was conveyed in a letter late Saturday from his attorney, lawmakers said, as the committee prepares to air some of its most striking revelations yet this week against Trump in what may be its final set of hearings.
“I expect that we will be hearing from him and there are many questions that we have for him,” said Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), according to AP.
She and other committee members said in television interviews Sunday they intend to have Bannon sit for a private interview, which they typically conduct in a deposition with sworn testimony.
Bannon is one of a host of Trump associates who received subpoenas to appear before the committee, but initially refused to do so. As such, the US House of Representatives voted this past October to hold Bannon in contempt of Congress for defying the subpoena.
He has argued that his testimony is protected by Trump’s claim of executive privilege. The committee contends such a claim is dubious because Trump had fired Bannon from the White House in 2017 and Bannon was thus a private citizen when he was consulting with the then-president in the run-up to the January 6 riot.
The committee’s Thursday evening hearing will examine the three-hour plus stretch when Trump failed to act as a mob of supporters stormed the Capitol. It will be the first hearing in prime time since the June 9 debut that was viewed by 20 million people.
A hearing Tuesday will focus on the plotting and planning of the insurrection by white nationalist groups such as the Proud Boys, the Oath Keepers and the Three Percenters, and will also highlight testimony taken Friday from former White House counsel Pat Cipollone.
Other Trump allies to have been subpoenaed by the House committee include his former lawyers Rudy Giuliani, Jenna Ellis and Sidney Powell.
In addition to Bannon, former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, Peter Navarro and Daniel Scavino have also been held in contempt of Congress for refusing to appear before the January 6 committee.
Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) suggested on Sunday that Bannon “had a change of heart, and after watching, presumably, all of these people come forward, including Cassidy Hutchinson, he’s decided that he wants to come in, and if he wants to come in, I’m certain that the committee would be very interested in hearing from him.”
Bannon’s trial on the two criminal counts is July 18. A hearing in his case was scheduled for Monday in federal court in Washington. Bannon has been seeking a delay in his trial to at least fall.