The request for previously undisclosed documents, revealed in a new trial, is the first confirmed subpoena issued by the committee to obtain information directly from a bank. The committee, which has acted aggressively in recent weeks, is using its subpoena power to track money surrounding the pro-Donald Trump rallies that led to the insurgency.
Trump spokesman Taylor Budowich revealed in a lawsuit Friday night that the committee demanded financial documents, prompting him to take legal action to prevent the committee from obtaining them. Bank JP Morgan was planning to comply, giving him a 5 p.m. ET deadline on Christmas Eve to show he had legally blocked the summons, according to a letter the bank sent him and which he included in the trial.
The lawsuit also reveals that Budowich has already provided the committee with over 1,700 pages of documents and provided approximately four hours of testimony.
It is currently unclear whether the bank has already turned over the financial records, as Budowich’s lawsuit against the committee and the bank trying to block the subpoena is already past the deadline. DC federal court did not respond to his cases on Saturday morning, and his trial could be a Hail Mary pass unlikely to succeed due to the schedule and federal appeals court rulings in the past.
“December 24 is a federal holiday. Federal courts are closed. The Capitol is closed. National banks are closed,” Budowich’s lawyers wrote in court on Friday, asking for emergency help. “Mr. Budowich’s board immediately contacted JPMorgan to request an extension. JPMorgan declined. Mr. Budowich contacted the board of the select committee for an extension. The select committee declined.”
The disclosures in the trial mark what appears to be a notable step forward for the Chamber in its search for information and could signal a broader end-of-year effort by investigators to sweep third-party files, such as than banks, which could help him understand the organization of rallies in Washington, DC, which catalyzed the insurgency.
Efforts to uncover riot funding
The committee divided its work into at least five teams, each with its own color designation. The âgreenâ team is responsible for tracking the money.
Another witness to the House inquiry, “Stop the Steal” organizer Ali Alexander has previously speculated in his own lawsuit against a subpoena of House committee telephone tapes that the inquiry of Congress was looking for financial records directly from the banks.
Alexander did not show any evidence that he knew the committee had requested such information. He too had handed over the files he had to the committee and had sat down for a deposition.
Rally organizers at the heart of the investigation
Budowich was a senior advisor to the Trump 2020 campaign, working specifically with Donald Trump Jr. and his girlfriend Kimberly Guilfoyle. He is a longtime right-wing political agent, working as a senior communications adviser to Ron DeSantis during his successful campaign for governor of Florida in 2018 and previously served as executive director of the Tea Party Express.
Budowich claimed that the documents he had already provided “were sufficient to identify all account transactions for the period from December 19, 2020 to January 31, 2021 as part of the Ellipse rally.”
“The select committee is wrongly seeking to compel Mr Budowich’s financial institution to provide the select committee with banking information that it lacks the legal authority to research and obtain,” the complaint said.
In its summons letter, the committee said Budowich “allegedly solicited a 501c (4) organization to run a social media and radio advertising campaign encouraging attendance at the Jan. 6 Ellipse rally and making unsubstantiated allegations. on the outcome of the election “.
The committee cited information filed with the panel to claim that Budowich directed approximately $ 200,000 from one or more sources to 501 (c) (4) which was “withheld from the organization to pay for the advertising campaign”.
This story has been updated to include additional reports and background information.