San Diego’s One America News and ex-San Diego politico Peter Navarro are noted in the final report of the congressional panel probing the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.
The 845-page report, released Thursday night, also cites testimony and emails mentioning Donald Trump lawyer Christina Bobb, a San Diego State University graduate.
Bobb produced materials for the House select committee.* But Navarro, the Trump aide who repeatedly failed in runs for San Diego office, refused to cooperate with the select committee and was indicted for contempt of Congress.
In end notes, the Jan. 6 committee said it interviewed Bobb on April 21 — but her deposition wasn’t among those released this week.
Bobb, a former OAN correspondent facing civil suits over promoting stolen-election lies, spoke Monday on “Real America with Dan Ball.”
Asked about the four criminal referrals — which Ball called “insane charges” — Bobb said they were all about preventing Trump from running in 2024 “because he’s not approved by the political elite. He doesn’t play by their rules. And he wants to return power back to the American people.”
“This is a show trial,” she said. “It’s trying to stir people up to believe that Donald Trump is somehow bad.”
She said Trump has a “very solid criminal defense team” in place.
“This has nothing to do with democracy or January 6th,” she said. “They tried this with the Impeachment Hoax 1 and the Impeachment Hoax 2 and the Russian Collusion Hoax. What hoax number are we on now?”
The report said that less than two weeks after the election, President Trump pushed “Team Normal” aside because its members didn’t tell him what he wanted to hear.
“In their place, Trump promoted Rudy Giuliani and his associates — men and women who spread baseless and extreme claims of election fraud,” including Bobb, the report said.
But Bobb couldn’t point to any evidence of wrongdoing by Dominion Voting Systems — which is suing OAN, Fox News and others about airing lies about it “switching votes” to Joe Biden, the report said.
Arizona’s vote was a source of contention as well.
Trump retweeted a post by campaign lawyer Bobb that accused Arizona House Speaker Russell “Rusty” Bowers of “intentionally misleading the people of Arizona.”
San Diego-based OAN was cited as a conduit of stolen-election lies.
On Nov. 19, 2020, Trump tweeted and retweeted a link to a segment on OAN titled, “Dominion-izing the Vote.”
“The segment claimed that Dominion had switched votes from Trump to Biden. OAN featured a supposed cyber expert, Ron Watkins, a key figure in the QAnon conspiracy movement,” the report said.
“On his own Twitter account, Watkins celebrated and thanked his supporters just minutes after President Trump tweeted the clip, and President Trump went on to share the clip again several times in the days that followed.”
OAN executives didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Though Navarro refused to cooperate with the committee, he referenced Steve Bannon’s “Green Bay Sweep” bid to overturn the election in his book “In Trump Time: A Journal of America’s Plague Year.”
“Although he doesn’t fully explain in his book … how Bannon’s sweep was intended to work, Navarro writes that Vice President Pence was envisioned as the ‘quarterback’ who would “assert his constitutional power” to delay certification of the electoral vote Jan. 6, the report notes.
“Navarro writes that his own role was to ‘carefully document the fraud and myriad election irregularities,’ while Bannon’s “role was to figure out how to use this information — what he called the ‘receipts.’”
The report says Navarro’s account helped explain why Trump and his loyalists became so fixated on Pence.
“They saw Vice President Pence as their last hope for keeping President Trump in office,” the report says. “Navarro writes of Pence’s supposed ‘betrayal.’ In a telling sentence, Navarro likens Vice President Pence to Brutus, a Roman politician and the most famous assassin of Julius Caesar.”
Navarro wrote in his book:
On this cold, momentous day, I shiver as I think to myself, “January 6 will be either Mike Pence’s finest hour or the traitorous ‘Et tu, Brute?’ end of both his and Donald Trump’s political careers.
The committee report outlines its case that Trump should face criminal charges of inciting the deadly riot.
The House of Representatives Select Committee also made public the transcripts of a number of its interviews and witness testimonies earlier on Thursday and on Wednesday.
The report is based on nearly 1,200 interviews over 18 months and hundreds of thousands of documents, as well as the rulings of more than 60 federal and state courts.
The report lists 17 specific findings, discusses the legal implications of actions by Trump and some of his associates and includes criminal referrals to the Justice Department of Trump and other individuals, according to an executive summary released earlier this week. It report also lists legislative recommendations to help avert another such attack.
On Monday, the committee asked federal prosecutors to charge the Republican former president with four crimes, including obstruction and insurrection, for what they said were efforts to overturn results of the November 2020 election and sparking the attack on the seat of government.
“Rather than honor his constitutional obligation to ‘take care that the laws be faithfully executed,’ President Trump instead plotted to overturn the election outcome,” the House panel had said earlier in a 160-page summary of its report.
In comments posted on his Truth Social network after the final report’s release, Trump called it “highly partisan” and a “witch hunt”. He said it failed to “study the reason for the (Jan. 6) protest, election fraud.”
The request by the Democratic-led panel to the Justice Department does not compel federal prosecutors to act, but marked the first time in history that Congress had referred a former president for criminal prosecution. Trump announced in November that he would run for president again.
Among the transcripts released on Wednesday and Thursday was one that showed a former lawyer for ex-White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson told her to “downplay” her knowledge of events leading to the Capitol riot, telling her “the less you remember, the better.”
Attorney Stefan Passantino advised Hutchinson in preparing for a February deposition before the panel to say that she could not recall certain events, she told the committee in September, according to the transcript of her testimony.
Trump gave a fiery speech to his supporters near the White House the morning of Jan. 6, and publicly chastised Pence for not going along with his plan to reject ballots cast for Democrat Joe Biden.
The former president then waited hours to make a public statement as thousands of his supporters raged through the Capitol, assaulting police and threatening to hang Pence.
The 2020 election results were being certified by Pence and lawmakers when the Capitol was attacked after weeks of false claims by Trump that he had won that election.
Updated at 10:17 a.m. Dec. 23, 2022
Reuters contributed to this report.
*An earlier version of this report incorrectly said that Trump 2020 spokesman Tim Murtaugh was related to 2018 San Diego congressional candidate Morgan Murtaugh.