WASHINGTON - Rudy Giuliani headlined a new list of witnesses subpoenaed Tuesday by the House panel investigating the Jan. 6 attack, as lawmakers zeroed in on former President Donald Trump's legal team who promoted false allegations of voter fraud to keep Trump in office.
"The four individuals we've subpoenaed today advanced unsupported theories about election fraud, pushed efforts to overturn the election results, or were in direct contact with the former President about attempts to stop the counting of electoral votes," the committee said in a statement.
"We expect these individuals to join the nearly 400 witnesses who have spoken with the Select Committee as the committee works to get answers for the American people about the violent attack on our democracy."
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In addition to Giuliani, the panel issued subpoenas for Trump attorneys Sidney Powell and Jenna Ellis, along with Boris Epshteyn who the committee said worked to advance the unsupported claims of election fraud.
The demands for testimony and documents from some of Trump's closest legal advisers, while not unanticipated, is likely to prompt new challenges, including claims of attorney-client privilege.
"With these subpoenas, the committee is not seeking the truth; they are in search of political theater," said attorney Robert Costello, who represents Giuliani. "Do you really think the committee is going to get substantial information from Rudy Giuliani? There are all sorts of privilege at play here, including communications involving attorney and client.
"Anybody with any common sense knows that attorney-client privilege is all over the place here."
Giuliani, who has long served as Trump's personal attorney, was the face of the failed legal effort to invalidate the 2020 election results.
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"Between mid-November 2020 and January 6, 2021, you actively promoted claims of election fraud on behalf of former President Trump and sought to convince state legislators to take steps to overturn election results," the committee said in its letter demanding testimony and documents from the former New York mayor.
"You urged President Trump to direct the seizure of voting machines around the country after being told that the Department of Homeland Security had no lawful authority to do so," the panel said.
The committee issued a similar demand to Powell, the former federal prosecutor and Texas lawyer who was often at Giuliani's side during the during the election challenge.
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Ellis, the committee said, prepared and distributed memos "purporting to analyze the constitutional authority for the Vice President to reject or delay counting electoral votes from states that had submitted alternate slates of electors."
The committee said Epshteyn attended meetings at the Willard Hotel prior to the Jan. 6 assault and was a party to "a call with former President Trump on the morning of January 6th to discuss options to delay the certification of election results in the event of Vice President Pence's unwillingness to deny or delay the certification."
The new cache of subpoenas mark yet another active period for congressional panel, which last week issued subpoenas for social media giants Alphabet, Meta, Reddit and Twitter, while seeking the cooperation of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.
McCarthy has rebuffed the panel's request for assistance.
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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Rudy Giuliani, other Trump backers subpoenaed by Jan 6 committee