The House January 6 Committee that investigated the Capitol storming did not preserve all of its records, evidence and transcripts, according to Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-Ga.). The revelation led former President Donald Trump to explode on social media, where he called the now-disbanded committee “CRIMINALS.”
Loudermilk, chairman of the Subcommittee on Oversight for the Committee on House Administration, said the Democrat-run Jan. 6 committee failed to preserve much of what it collected over the investigation, including most of its information on security failures that occurred during the storming.
“Part of our task as this oversight subcommittee is to actually address the security failures, look into how did it happen… how were these folks able to get into the Capitol,” Loudermilk said, according to Fox News Digital.
The congressman noted that the Jan. 6 committee’s documents were delivered in unorganized boxes.
“Nothing was indexed. There was no table of contents index. Usually when you conduct this level of investigation, you use a database system and everything is digitized, indexed. We got nothing like that. We just got raw data,” he said. “So it took us a long time going through it and one thing I started realizing is we don’t have anything much at all from the Blue Team.”
The “Blue Team” was a group within the Jan. 6 committee tasked with investigating security failures at the Capitol.
Loudermilk said sources revealed the Jan. 6 committee “shut down” the Blue Team in an effort to focus on blaming Trump for the event.
“We’ve got lots of depositions, we’ve got lots of subpoenas, we’ve got video and other documents provided through subpoenas by individuals. But we’re not seeing anything from the Blue Team as far as reports on the investigation they did looking into the actual breach itself,” he said.
“What we also realized we didn’t have was the videos of all the depositions,” Loudermilk added.
According to Loudermilk, at least one defense attorney contacted him about accessing important information in one video deposition – but Loudermilk’s committee didn’t have the requested videos.
Loudermilk noted in a letter to Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) – who led the Jan. 6 committee – that the law and House rules compelled the committee to preserve and turn over all data from their investigation.
Thompson rejected Loudermilk’s assertions, claiming the letter was riddled with “factual errors” and insisted the Jan. 6 committee followed the rules, turning over “4 terabytes” of data.
But Thompson only turned over 2.5 terabytes of data, Loudermilk said, adding that Thompson later acknowledged the committee did not preserve all documents in a separate letter.
“Consistent with guidance from the Office of the Clerk and other authorities, the Select Committee did not archive temporary committee records that were not elevated by the Committee’s actions, such as use in hearings or official publications, or those that did not further its investigative activities,” Thompson wrote, adding that the committee “was not obligated to archive all video recordings of transcribed interviews or depositions.”
“Based on guidance from House authorities, the Select Committee determined that the written transcripts provided by nonpartisan, professional official reporters, which the witnesses and Select Committee staff had the opportunity to review for errata, were the official, permanent records of transcribed interviews and depositions for the purposes of rule VII,” he added.
“He’s saying they decided they didn’t have to,” Loudermilk told Fox News Digital. “It was clear in law they had to especially and, I mean, if there was any question, the fact that they used the videos in the hearings would dictate that it had to be preserved. The more we go in the more we’re realizing that there’s things that we don’t have. We don’t have anything about security failures at the Capitol, we don’t have the videos of the depositions.”
Trump, who was recently indicted over his alleged efforts to overturn the 2020 election, called the committee “criminals” for failing to preserve the data from their investigation.
“THE JANUARY 6 UNSELECT COMMITTEE EXTINGUISHED AND DESTROYED ALL ‘EVIDENCE’ & RECORDS. CRIMINALS!” Trump posted on Truth Social.