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Jan. 6 riot committee will invite Ginni Thomas to testify

Associate Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas sits with his wife and conservative activist Virginia Thomas while he waits to speak at the Heritage Foundation on October 21, 2021 in Washington, DC.

Drew Angerer | Getty Images

The chairman of the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol riot on Thursday said that the panel will invite Virginia “Ginni” Thomas, wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, to testify about her involvement in efforts to reverse Donald Trump’s presidential election loss.

Disclosure of the plan to invite Ginni Thomas came a day after a report that the committee had obtained emails between her and John Eastman, a lawyer who was advising Trump on the 2020 election.

Eastman was a leading proponent of a plan to have Trump and others pressure then-Vice President Mike Pence to block the certification by Congress of President Joe Biden’s electoral victory.

Ginni Thomas told The Daily Caller that was willing to testify.

“I can’t wait to clear up misconceptions. I look forward to talking to them,” Thomas told the Daily Caller.

Her comment came as the Jan. 6. was holding its third public hearing, which focused on details of Trump’s pressure on Pence, who refused to go along with the plan.

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“We think it’s time that we, at some point, invite her [Ginni Thomas] to come talk to the committee,” said Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., the committee’s chair, to reporters, shortly before the start of that hearing.

Thompson said the planned invitation is based on “information we have come upon.”

He later said the invitation to Thomas will be issued in the next few weeks.

But Thompson later told reporters after the hearing, “We have sent Mrs. Thomas a letter asking us to come and talk to the committee.”

“We look forward to her coming,” he added.

An aide to Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, one of just two Republicans on the Jan. 6 committee, said Cheney also agrees that it is time for Ginni Thomas to be interviewed by the panel.

Cheney reportedly previously had leaned against calling in Ginni Thomas to testify.

The Washington Post, citing people involved in the panel’s probe, said that Thomas’ involvement in the bid to reverse Trump’s loss was more extensive than had been previously known.

The New York Times separately reported that Eastman had told another pro-Trump lawyer and Trump campaign officials on Dec. 24, 2020, that he was aware of a “heated fight” among Supreme Court justices over whether that court should consider cases involving Trump’s bid to overturn election results in several key states.

Eastman previously served as a Supreme Court clerk to Justice Thomas.

A spokeswoman for the Supreme Court did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.

 — CNBC’s Kevin Breuninger contributed to this article.

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2022-06-16 15:48:42

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