It’s unusual for Congress to subpoena a line prosecutor — and Jordan, in his Thursday letter, alleges that Bragg’s office ordered Pomerantz not to cooperate with the surveillance. Bragg and Pomerantz’s office did not immediately respond to questions regarding this claim.
But Pomerantz also wrote a book in which he included details about New York’s investigation of Trump and the Trump Organization that could make the subpoena harder to resist.
The Jan. 6 select committee used a similar argument against former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows’ resistance to a summons, saying he had waived any potential privilege by publishing a book outlining some of his interactions with the former president. Meadows was later charged with contempt of Congress for refusing to testify, although the Justice Department declined to prosecute him.
However, another witness to the January 6 committee who wrote a book before refusing to appear – Peter Navarro – is currently being sued for contempt of Congress.
Jordan told Pomerantz that “you have no reason to refuse to testify before the committee on issues that you have already discussed in your book and/or on a primetime television show with an audience of millions, including on the basis of any alleged obligation of confidentiality or privileged interest”.
The subpoena comes just days after Trump appeared in court in New York and pleaded not guilty to 34 counts of “falsifying business records”. Prosecutors allege that Trump, the first former president ever indicted, first tried to bury and then cover up damaging allegations of an extramarital affair by falsifying company records.
It also comes as Republicans assess their next steps in their investigation of Bragg’s office.
They returned several rounds of volleys to obtain testimony and official documents from Leslie Dubeck, Bragg’s general counsel. Dubeck responded to Jordan, Chairman of the Oversight Committee james comer (R-Ky.) and Chairman of the Board of Directors Bryan Steil (R-Wis.) Last week, requesting a list of questions they would like to ask Bragg as well as documents they think they can receive that would not disclose private details of an investigation.
Dubeck, while urging Republicans to negotiate ahead of a potential Bragg subpoena, also offered a searing critique of the investigation in his letter calling their charges of political persecution “baseless and inflammatory.”
“We urge you to refrain from these inflammatory accusations, withdraw your request for information, and allow the criminal justice process to proceed without unlawful political interference,” she added.
Bragg’s office argued that congressional Republicans had no “legitimate legislative purpose” behind the investigation into the DA’s Trump investigation. But Jordan has argued the probe is tied to the domestic implications of prosecuting a former president — from conflicts between state and federal laws to the Secret Service’s role in protecting an ex-president who is also a criminal defendant.
Republicans have yet to respond to Dubeck’s latest letter, but Jordan defended the investigation in his letter to Pomerantz – reiterating that Republicans could use the findings to draft bills on the use of federal funds confiscation.
That would include, Jordan said, a possible ban on those funds being used to investigate a current or former president, or a presidential candidate. (The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office disclosed that it used federal forfeiture funds for expenses related to investigations of Trump or the Trump Organization.)
Jordan pointed out in a series of TV interviews this week that a Bragg subpoena remains on the table. He also left the door open for the DA to appear willingly or even for Republicans to focus on other individuals in Bragg’s orbit first.
Pomerantz and Carey Dunne are of particular interest to House Republicans, as both resigned from Bragg’s office earlier this year – apparently due to Bragg’s misgivings at the time about pursuing the Trump case. Thursday’s subpoena comes after Jordan sent letters to Pomerantz and Dunne last month but did not issue a similar subpoena to Dunne.
Kyle Cheney contributed to this report.