PC: NBC News
According to a complaint filed in US District Court on Thursday and additional documents obtained by CNN, Pennsylvania GOP gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano is suing the House select committee looking into the January 6, 2021 uprising to prevent the panel from making him take a sworn deposition.
Mastriano contends in the complaint that the committee has the authority to force his or any other witness’s deposition who refuses to take one.
Plaintiff was willing to participate in a voluntary interview because “the Select Committee has absolutely no power to conduct coerced depositions,” according to the complaint. However, since Plaintiff is now the Republican candidate for governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, he requested the Committee accept a number of preventative measures to make sure his participation wouldn’t put the election for that state at risk.
According to the complaint, “Unfortunately, the Committee refused to negotiate any parameters of a voluntary interview that would prohibit them from unfairly influencing the election.
A person familiar with the situation previously told CNN that Mastriano’s virtual appearance earlier this month before the January 6 committee barely lasted approximately 15 minutes and “he didn’t answer a single question.”
The virtual appearance was abruptly terminated by his counsel, according to the source. The source said at the time that Mastriano’s attorney, Tim Parlatore, had issues with a number of deposition-related procedural issues and questioned the validity of the subpoena the panel had issued to Mastriano.
“We spent 15 minutes there. The committee’s inability to comply with the rules governing the use of deposition authority, as well as their lack of motivation in doing so, were obvious “The speaker remarked. If they can do it fairly and legally or if we can come to an agreement on how to do a voluntary interview that reduces the potential of electoral interference, we’re willing to supply the information.
Mastriano played a major role in the former president Donald Trump’s campaign to rig the 2020 election. On January 6, 2021, during the uprising, Mastriano was again a part of the crowd of Trump backers outside the Capitol, although he stayed outside and hasn’t been charged with any crimes.
According to an earlier CNN story, Mastriano’s participation was anticipated to be brief and ineffective due to disagreements between his side and the committee regarding things like whether he could independently videotape or record it.