On Monday evening the chairman of the January 6th committee, Bennie Thompson, told Punchbowl News' John Bresnahan that there would be no criminal referrals for Donald Trump or anyone else following their 'made-for-TV' hearings.
"That’s not our job. Our job is to look at Jan. 6. What caused it and make recommendations after that… We don’t have the authority," said Thompson, adding that the committee will publicly release all documents and materials - including depositions, as part of its public report.
/2 Thompson: “That’s not our job. Our job is to look at Jan. 6. What caused it and make recommendations after that… We don’t have the authority.”— John Bresnahan (@bresreports) June 13, 2022
Less than an hour later, RINO J6 committee member Liz Cheney tweeted that they have "not issued a conclusion regarding potential criminal referrals," and "will announce a decision on that at an appropriate time."
Then, Thompson walked back his comments even further through a spokesperson who said that "The Select Committee has no authority to prosecute individuals, but is rather tasked with developing the facts surrounding the January 6th riot at the Capitol…"
"Right now, the committee is focused on presenting our findings to the American people in our hearings and in our report," they continued. "Our investigation is ongoing and we will continue to gather all relevant information as we present facts, offer recommendations and, if warranted, make criminal referrals."
Thompson's initial comments and subsequent walkback are a far cry from J6 Committee member Adam Schiff (D-CA)'s claim that there is "credible evidence" to indict Trump.
"There are certain actions, parts of these different lines of effort to overturn the election, that I don’t see evidence the Justice Department is investigating," Schiff told ABC's "This Week" on Sunday. "Once the evidence is accumulated by the Justice Department, it needs to make a decision about whether it can prove to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt the president’s guilt or anyone else’s. But they need to be investigated if there’s credible evidence, which I think there is."
“I’d like to see the Justice Department investigate any credible allegation of criminal activity, on the part of Donald Trump or anyone else. The rule of law needs to apply equally to everyone,” Rep. Adam Schiff tells @MarthaRaddatz. https://t.co/KLKwReJHrT pic.twitter.com/dKTpDnZtwY— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) June 12, 2022
Is it more than circumstantial this time?
Remember what Adam Schiff said two years ago—that he had proof, beyond circumstantial, of collusion.— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) September 23, 2019
Let's not make the same mistake again. pic.twitter.com/2Xi8IeJatT