A lawyer for former President Trump on Saturday dismissed the Jan. 6 committee’s criminal referrals against Trump as “pretty much worthless.”
“The Department of Justice doesn’t have to follow it,” Tim Parlatore told CNN. “There’s been an existing investigation that we have been dealing with for quite some time. And, really what this does, if anything, it just politicizes the process.”
Parlatore represents the former president in the Justice Department’s (DOJ) investigations into the Jan. 6 riot and the classified documents recovered from his home at Mar-a-Lago.
“It’s political noise, but it doesn’t really have any effect, as of right now, on our defense,” he added.
The House select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol recommended on Monday that the Justice Department investigate Trump for inciting an insurrection, conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to make a false statement and obstruction of an official proceeding.
The criminal referrals were followed by the release of the committee’s 845-page final report on Thursday, as the panel wraps up its 18-month investigation.
While the Department of Justice is not required to follow through on referrals from congressional committees, Chair Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) said on Monday that he is confident the DOJ will eventually charge Trump.
“The committee looked at it long and hard,” Thompson said in an interview with CNN. “And from my vantage point, we couldn’t do anything except make the referral.”
“It was clear in our review, it was clear in evaluation of the evidence uncovered by our committee that those actions taken by former President Trump clearly created a problem for this country,” he added.