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Trump ally John Eastman hands over nearly 8,000 emails to Capitol riot committee, hides 11,000 more

John Eastman, an attorney at the heart of Donald Trump‘s quest to overturn the 2020 election, has handed over 8,000 pages of emails to the House select committee investigating January 6, according to a Monday court filing.

The former law professor is also trying to use executive privilege to shield more than 10,000 documents, after failing to block a subpoena for 94,000 pages of emails.  

Eastman had appeared alongside Rudy Giuliani at Trump’s Stop The Steal rally shortly before the Capitol riot, where Giuliani infamously called for a ‘trial by combat’ over the election. 

He was subpoenaed by the House panel late last year for having a key role in devising the ex-president’s legal strategy that claimed former Vice President Mike Pence had the authority to singularly overturn President Joe Biden‘s electoral victory.

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The formal request for nearly 100,000 pages of online correspondence was sent to Chapman University, where Eastman used to work. He was also asked to come for a deposition himself.

Eastman had unsuccessfully sued to block the documents’ release citing attorney-client privilege. Instead, U.S. District Court Judge James Carter ordered Eastman to review 1,500 pages a day in order to itemize his privilege claims late last month.

He still has roughly 48,000 pages left to sort. 

Eastman (pictured in 2013) failed to block nearly 100,000 documents from a House Capitol riot committee subpoena. A judge instead ordered him in late January to itemize his privilege claims and sort what he can hand over to the committee, at a rate of 1,500 pages per day

Of those he’s reviewed so far, Eastman handed nearly 8,000 pages over to lawmakers on the committee.

An additional 27,000 were irrelevant to the investigation and automatically withheld, such as distribution list emails soliciting campaign donations and various newsletters. 

Eastman and House investigators are appearing in court Monday afternoon to deliver an update to the judge presiding over the case.

Lawmakers are reportedly specifically looking for emails and documents that link Eastman to Trump or his failed 2020 bid. 

On Friday House investigators complained that Eastman was slow-walking the process and only provided vague phrases to describe items in the 11,000 he’s so far kept privileged, such as ‘legal arguments’ or ‘proposal to consider’ according to Politico.

House Counsel Doug Letter complained that the former law professor’s excuses for keeping documents hidden was over-broad.  

‘The Select Committee’s urgent need for resolution of the privilege issues is heightened by the fact that Plaintiff has broadly claimed privileges over a vast swath of documents–many of which appear to be critical to the Select Committee’s investigation,’ Letter said. 

Eastman appeared alongside Rudy Giuliani at Trump's January 6 Stop The Steal rally immediately before the Capitol riot

Eastman appeared alongside Rudy Giuliani at Trump’s January 6 Stop The Steal rally immediately before the Capitol riot

Trump supporters marched on the US Capitol after multiple rally speakers used inflammatory rhetoric, Giuliani even calling for a 'trial by combat'

Trump supporters marched on the US Capitol after multiple rally speakers used inflammatory rhetoric, Giuliani even calling for a ‘trial by combat’

Eastman’s attorney suggested the House was trying to rush its investigation for political reasons — noting the critical Congressional races happening in less than nine months.

‘To the extent the congressional defendants’ claimed ‘urgent need for resolution of the privilege issues’ is motivated by the looming 2022 midterm election, this is not a valid reason to alter this Court’s January 26 order,’ the lawyer claimed. 

The pro-Trump professor’s theories for how Pence could have overturned the election, specifically in seven battleground states, were eponymously named the ‘Eastman memos.’

Trump reportedly soured on Pence when the former vice president rejected the memos’ argument by refusing to go along with the strategy, shortly before he was due to preside over a joint session of Congress to certify Biden’s victory. 

Eastman was also allegedly one of Trump’s ‘top lieutenants’ present at the Willard Hotel in Washington, DC from the evening of January 5 through the morning of January 6. 

House investigators are curious to hear from Eastman about that as well. 

The Willard Intercontinental Hotel (pictured) was allegedly a 'command center' for members of Trump's orbit the night before the Capitol riot where they discussed ways to upend Joe Biden's 2020 victory on the basis of 'election fraud'

The Willard Intercontinental Hotel (pictured) was allegedly a ‘command center’ for members of Trump’s orbit the night before the Capitol riot where they discussed ways to upend Joe Biden’s 2020 victory on the basis of ‘election fraud’

The group, also led by Steve Bannon and former strategic adviser Boris Epshteyn, established a ‘command center’ out of the Willard where they reportedly fielded calls from Trump and discussed ways to steal the election hours before his supporters stormed the US Capitol.

Trump adviser Jason Miller and former New York City police commissioner Bernard Kerik, a top deputy of Giuliani’s, were also reportedly in attendance.

Trump spokeswoman Liz Harrington previously told DailyMail.com that the report, first published in The Guardian, ‘is totally false.’  

On the evening of January 5 Trump reportedly made separate calls to his legal and non-legal aides to discuss avenues to stop the next day’s vote certification and delay the process until Congress received a new slate of electors.

The report claims the calls were separate on Giuliani’s insistence it would maintain attorney-client privilege. It also cites ‘multiple sources’ without going into further detail on whether they were even present.

The calls, which would directly link the former president to his associates’ efforts to overturn a democratic election, reportedly took place a day after Eastman unveiled a his memo.


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