WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal appeals court ruled Thursday against an effort by President Donald Trump to shield documents from the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol.
The three-judge panel said there was a “unique legislative need” for documents that the committee has requested but whose release Trump has sought to block through executive privilege.
Appeal court found that injunctions that have prevented National Archives from turning over documents would expire within two weeks or after the Supreme Court decides on a Trump-related appeal.
Requests for comment from the House committee or Trump representatives were not answered immediately on Thursday.
Trump filed suit against the Jan. 6, House committee, and National Archives in an attempt to prevent the White House from releasing documents related to the rebellion. President Joe Biden had waived Trump’s executive privilege claims as the current officeholder.
The National Archives has said that the records Trump wants to block include presidential diaries, visitor logs, speech drafts, handwritten notes “concerning the events of January 6” from the files of former chief of staff Mark Meadows, and “a draft Executive Order on the topic of election integrity.”
Douglas Letter from the U.S. House argued in favor of the committee. Letter noted that Congress and Biden had agreed that Jan. 6 records must be released.
Democrats were the ones who nominated the three judges of appeals courts that heard arguments. Ex-President Barack Obama had nominated Robert Wilkins, Judge Robert Millett. Biden appointee Judge Ketanji brown Jackson could be a contender to a seat on the Supreme Court, should there be one.