The House panel investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection could make multiple criminal referrals of former President Donald Trump to the Justice Department, its vice chair, Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), said Sunday.
In an interview on ABC’s “This Week,” Cheney said it was possible the panel would make a criminal referral and “we’ll make a decision as a committee” about whether to do so.
“The Justice Department doesn’t have to wait for the committee to make a criminal referral,” she noted. “There could be more than one criminal referral.”
Criminal charges have never been brought against a sitting or former American president. Asked what it would mean for the nation if President Joe Biden’s Justice Department brought charges against his predecessor and potential 2024 rival, Cheney said: “I have greater concern about what it would mean if people weren’t held accountable for what’s happened here.”
“I think it’s a much graver constitutional threat if a president can engage in these kinds of activities and, you know, the majority of the president’s party looks away or we as a country decide, you know, we’re not actually going to take our constitutional obligations seriously,” she said. “I think that’s a much ― a much more serious threat.”
“I think there’s no question, I mean, a man as dangerous as Donald Trump can absolutely never be anywhere near the Oval Office ever again,” she later added.
The panel has laid out striking evidence demonstrating how Trump and his team may have knowingly broken multiple laws in their effort to overturn the 2020 election. At the last hearing, the panel also pointed to a new concern: that Trump allies could be trying to intimidate witnesses cooperating with the probe, which is also a crime.