Steve Bannon found guilty of two counts of criminal contempt of Congress

The January 6th Committee has issued subpoenas to many people involved in the Trump administration and beyond. While some of those people refused to testify publicly, they did agree to testify in taped sessions. Ivanka Trump, Jared Kushner, former AG Bill Barr and many more were subpoenaed and they complied, speaking under oath to the committee. But not Steve Bannon. Bannon didn’t even have an official position in the Trump administration from 2018-2021, he was just a loose “advisor” to Trump, filling Trump’s head with white supremacist propaganda constantly, and coming and going from the White House whenever he wanted. Bannon was there, in the White House, on and around the January 6th insurrection. Bannon refused to comply with the subpoena and the committee charged him with criminal contempt of Congress. On Friday, he was found guilty.

A federal jury has convicted former Trump political adviser Steve Bannon of two counts of criminal contempt of Congress for intentionally defying a subpoena related to the assault on the U.S. Capitol last year. Bannon put on no defense in the case, which featured testimony from just two government witnesses, including the deputy staff director of the House Select Committee investigating the events of Jan. 6, 2021.

The Justice Department told jurors the case was black and white – as simple as the words on the subpoena to Bannon last autumn.

“The defendant chose allegiance to Donald Trump over compliance with the law,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Molly Gaston said in closing arguments.

Bannon had broadcast his defiance on the social media site Gettr, prosecutors said, posting that he told lawmakers he would “NOT comply” on Oct. 8, 2021, after the first committee deadline had passed.

The chief government witness, Kristin Amerling of the Jan. 6 committee, told jurors the panel wanted to know more about Bannon’s contacts with former President Trump, his presence with others at the Willard Hotel in early 2021, and his statement on the War Room podcast that “all hell is going to break loose” a day before the Capitol siege.

Bannon provided no documents to the Democrat-led committee and failed to show up for a deposition last year, claiming he was barred from appearing because Trump had asserted executive privilege. U.S. District Judge Carl Nichols cast doubt on the privilege claim and Trump’s own lawyer suggested that it would not cover Bannon’s wholesale refusal to cooperate with the House Select Committee.

Criminal contempt prosecutions are rare, but so is a decision by a witness to fully reject congressional demands. Bannon faces the prospect of jail time and monetary fines when he is sentenced October 21. Another key Trump aide, Peter Navarro, is scheduled to go to trial in November on contempt charges. Navarro has pleaded not guilty.

[From NPR]

I made my point about how Bannon hadn’t even worked for Trump for more than three years before the insurrection because Bannon’s defense was partially “executive privilege.” He didn’t work for Trump! He was just there as a non-employee and unofficial advisor to Trump, so there is no privilege. Anyway, the jury apparently returned with the verdict in a matter of a couple of hours, that’s how clear-cut this case was. While Bannon promises to appeal, he’ll likely be sentenced in October. If they max out his sentencing, he could go to jail for two years and get fined $200,000. Bannon says he’s perfectly willing to go to jail for Trump. He said that on Fox News on Friday, when he appeared on Tucker Carlson’s show.

Photos courtesy of Cover Images.

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25 Responses to “Steve Bannon found guilty of two counts of criminal contempt of Congress”

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  1. Lolo86lf says:

    Bannon will dig himself a deeper hole between now and his sentencing court date. He will go on his podcast, his twitter account, his truth social account, on Fox News, on OAN, on News Max and the rest of the conservative media outlets to talk trash about the judge who found him guilty (the same judge who will set his incarceration time). Point is: He will likely get maximum sentence time.

  2. Lizzie says:

    Is there any reason he shouldn’t get the full 2 years?

    • Bettyrose says:

      Not legally but I don’t trust it. These guys escape justice in the regular.

    • GR says:

      He’s a somewhat powerful white guy, so he may just get the minimum.

    • Lizzie says:

      The judge can consider everything he says post conviction so what he says in these interviews can count against him.

  3. Rapunzel says:

    “Bannon says he’s perfectly willing to go to jail for Trump. He said that on Fox News on Friday, when he appeared on Tucker Carlson’s show.”

    And…There’s you proof Bannon is a total moron.

  4. MaryContrary says:

    While he looks like he wandered out of a dive bar at closing, he’s a scary guy and a menace to democracy.

  5. Merricat says:

    I hope he sits in jail for two years, and if he manages to live through that, I hope he emerges to find himself irrelevant.

  6. Rural Juror says:

    I wonder why they wouldn’t just bring him up on contempt proceedings. If he’s found in contempt for refusing to comply with a court order, he can actually be incarcerated until he complies. It’s a pretty effective tool to use against people who just decide that the law doesn’t apply to them.

  7. Colby says:

    I would be excited, but as he is rich white man, we know next to nothing will happen to him

  8. laurie says:

    As far as I know no one has been jailed for refusing a subpoena. Just community service and monetary assessments. I say this as someone who hates this piece of excrement with all my soul. I am terrified there will be no consequences for all these asshats and the democracy will go down in flames. 🤬

  9. Lens says:

    Hallelujah! Seems to me many in the MAGA administration feel like they can just ignore subpoenas from Congress When it AGAINST the law! During the two deserved impeachments they all ignored subpoenas.

  10. Lens says:

    Hallelujah! So many in the MAGA administration feel like they can just ignore subpoenas from Congress When it AGAINST the law! During the two deserved impeachments they all ignored them.

  11. Hyrule Castle says:

    I can’t seem to find the answer to this question, so any help appreciated.

    Will he now have to testify? Or is it just fines/jail?

    He should have to testify PLUS the repercussions of ignoring the subpoena.

    Also, he should have been in jail throughout all this! Ridiculous he’s still running around free.

    ETA: testify in front of the committee/congress, I mean.

  12. ClaireB says:

    Get back to me when this smug POS faces any actual consequences for his actions, not just the threat of maybe some consequences at some point.

    • AMA1977 says:

      This. I long for the days when I was blissfully unaware of the existence of this sh!tstain and long to return to them. BUT HER EMAILS!!! And now we have the fallout from this trash acting as unofficial advisor to the dumpster president. Lock him up.

  13. He is evil says:

    He is a very dangerous man and should be behind bars for life!!!! Glad he got 2 yrs and I hope for more.

  14. Kate says:

    This is slightly off topic but as I’m watching the hearings and seeing this all play out something has been bothering me. Like, Bannon is a snake. He will lie about what color the damn sky is. Why do we think, as a collective, that being under oath will somehow make him tell the truth? These people do not give a sh*t about honor. I get that he could be afraid of getting caught in a lie at some point, and the consequences that might arise from that, but idk it’s just weird to me how we act like being under oath is some kind of lasso of truth.

    • Merricat says:

      Because lying under oath adds charges.

    • Korra says:

      Bannon is a propagandist, so yes, he does lie or misrepresent the truth often. But at the same time, there is an arrogance about him that he sometimes he enjoys speaking with candor or saying the quiet parts out loud because he likes to rub it into people’s face. I believe under oath, he would reveal a few kernels of truth.

  15. og bella says:

    Probably because two years for contempt is a much better sentence than life for treason?

  16. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I won’t hold my breath.

  17. JustMe says:

    Canadian here so apologies if i am wrong but didn’t Bannon provide the link from Russia to Trump? Like he was actually living in Russia after Trump was defeated?.

  18. jferber says:

    Bitch needs to go to jail for a long time. Won’t happen, but he sure deserves it. Too bad white, rich men rarely get their just desserts.