1/6 Committee Chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson said that Clark’s Fifth Amendment assertion makes it obvious that criminal activity occurred in the Trump White House.
Video of Chairman Thompson on The Rachel Maddow Show:
Jeffrey Clark has until Saturday to show up and assert his 5th Amendment right against self-prosecution. 1/6 Committee Chair Bennie Thompson (D-MS) said, "He is aware that something went on that is illegal. Rather than be responsible and answer, he is pleading the Fifth." pic.twitter.com/K9VokMc0PO
— Sarah Reese Jones (@PoliticusSarah) December 2, 2021
Thompson said when asked by Maddow if Clark’s Fifth Amendment assertion is an admission that criminal activity occurred:
Well, it could very well mean that. Obviously, he is aware that something went on that is illegal. Rather than be responsible and answer, he is pleading the fifth.
The question is, did you participate in these illegal activities in the white house. As you know, he recommended a process by which the elections could be manipulated in certain states. Well, that’s clearly illegal, but we need to hear from him whether or not he said it. We have reason to believe he did. But if he’s of the opinion that if I come before the committee and acknowledge that, then I have contributed to the January 6th insurrection in part simply because I made a recommendation that ultimately led states to believe they could overturn the election.
Look at what went on in Arizona. Look what tried to go on in Michigan. Look at Georgia. We had the secretary of state in Georgia basically say the president called me and tried to get me to somehow find enough votes to change the outcome of the election. Well, this is part of what we believe Mr. Clark knew about and part of his recommendation. That’s why he needs to come before the committee. But if he is saying, okay. I’ll come, but I’ll plead the fifth, then in some instances that says you are part and parcel, guilty to what occurred.
Does Clark Have Information That Criminally Implicates Trump?
Trump is already under criminal investigation in Georgia for election interference. If Clark was involved in criminal activity related to trying to overturn the election, Trump was involved in the same activity.
The former president is on tape trying to get Georgia election officials to overturn the results for him.
Clark’s Fifth Amendment assertion is an attempt to protect himself from prosecution, but it is also an effort to protect the people around him like Donald Trump and other White House, campaign officials, and Republican members of Congress who participated in the coup attempt.
The Fifth Amendment is a big red flag to investigators and prosecutors that something illegal happened, Instead of delaying the process, Clark may end up accelerating the criminal prosecutions.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association