“The committee continues to meet. [We have a] meeting upcoming, and decision points to be made,” Rep. Pete Aguilar (D-CA) said, per NBC. “We will announce anything we have likely as a part of our final report.”
Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS) previously told reporters he anticipates the panel will make criminal referrals but was coy about potential targets. Under the statute that established the committee, it is required to release a final report on its sprawling inquiry by Dec. 31.
Committee members have been strongly contemplating a criminal referral for former President Donald Trump for his actions surrounding the Capitol riot and efforts to overturn the 2020 election, according to reports. Echoing Thompson, Aguilar stressed that decisions on criminal referrals have not yet been finalized.
“We haven’t finalized any decisions yet. Our options are on the table. Referrals to outside agencies are possible and as soon as the committee finishes our work moving forward to sharing our results,” Aguilar added.
Such referrals have no legal weight, as it will be up to law enforcement agencies to decide whether to pursue criminal charges.
An exact timeline for the release of the final report has not yet been divulged. Thompson said it could entail as many as eight chapters. Aguilar teased that there would likely be redacted information in that report during a CNN interview.
He stressed that the panel has been meeting “almost daily” as it races to finish outstanding work left on the docket. The panel had subpoenaed Trump for testimony and documents following its final public hearing in October.
Trump has defied that subpoena demand and weeks later debuted his 2024 presidential campaign. He has long fumed at the committee, denouncing it as a “witch hunt,” and sued to frustrate the subpoena.
Meanwhile, Attorney General Merrick Garland has appointed Jack Smith as a special counsel to weigh whether or not to move forward on criminal charges against him for the Justice Department’s Jan. 6 investigations and Mar-a-Lago document inquiry.