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Mark Meadows will stop cooperating with the Jan. 6 panel

Former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows was one of the first Trump administration officials subpoenaed by the committee, in late September.
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Former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows was one of the first Trump administration officials subpoenaed by the committee, in late September.

Updated December 7, 2021 at 4:03 PM ET

In an about-face, former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows will no longer cooperate with the House panel investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. The announcement from Meadows' attorney comes a week after Meadows said he would appear for an initial deposition and providing documents to the committee.

"We now must decline the opportunity to appear voluntarily for a deposition," Meadows' attorney George Terwilliger wrote to the committee in a letter obtained by NPR.

"Mr. Meadows has consistently sought in good faith to pursue an accommodation with the Select Committee and up until yesterday we believed that could be obtained," Terwilliger wrote, noting that Meadows agreed to cooperate and answer questions where he would not have to waive executive privilege. "We now have every indication from the information supplied to us last Friday ... that the Select Committee has no intention of respecting boundaries concerning Executive Privilege."

House Select Committee Chair Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., and Vice Chair Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., said in a statement if Meadows fails to appear at Wednesday's deposition, "the Select Committee will be left no choice but to advance contempt proceedings and recommend that the body in which Mr. Meadows once served refer him for criminal prosecution."

They noted that even as the issue of privilege is being litigated, the committee has several questions stemming from records that Meadows handed over to the committee with no claim of privilege.

Meadows was one of the first Trump administration officials subpoenaed by the committee in late September. His deposition was delayed as he engaged with the committee.

Terwilliger has maintained the courts need to resolve the issue over executive privilege between Meadows and the panel.

NPR Justice correspondent Ryan Lucas contributed to this report.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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