White House offers key GOP lawmaker access to unredacted January 6 panel transcripts as part of Republican probe

The White House is offering a key Republican lawmaker the chance to review transcripts from the House January 6 committee’s interviews, according to a letter obtained by CNN, with the goal of appeasing a GOP-led investigation into the panel.

GOP Rep. Barry Loudermilk will have the opportunity to examine the unredacted transcripts “in camera” if he agrees to protect the names of the four witnesses who were mentioned anonymously in the January 6 committee’s final report, the letter says. As part of the White House offer, Loudermilk will be allowed to review but not keep the transcripts.

CNN has reached out to Loudermilk for comment on the White House offer.

Loudermilk, who is spearheading the Republican-led investigation into the work of the former January 6 select committee, prompted the White House for the unredacted transcripts because he claimed the redacted versions he had access to excluded key details, according to a letter obtained by CNN.

The offer from the White House comes as House Republicans have sought to discredit the January 6 committee’s investigation and related criminal cases against Trump since taking over the majority.

Since starting his probe, Loudermilk has alleged he is missing certain transcripts, video tapes of depositions and information from the former January 6 panel, claims that have been repeated by former President Donald Trump and his allies in court.

Trump’s attorney in the Georgia election subversion case has accused prosecutors of withholding deposition videos from the January 6 committee’s interviews with former Justice Department officials, claiming footage was shown to the grand jury but not turned over to defense attorneys in discovery.

The allegation was ultimately determined to be baseless as prosecutors confirmed in court that no such footage exists, but the claim successfully added fuel to an ongoing narrative of collusion between the committee and criminal prosecutors who have charged Trump in various election-related cases.

The transcripts Republicans are seeking from the White House are of officials who worked during the Trump administration on January 6, 2021, serving in non partisan roles, including positions with national security responsibilities, Richard Sauber, special counsel to President Joe Biden, wrote to Loudermilk.

“We will make the unredacted transcripts available to you for review in camera, provided that you agree in writing to abide by the commitments made on a bipartisan basis by the Select Committee—to maintain the anonymity of the four witnesses consistent with the conditions under which the witnesses agreed to appear before the Select Committee, and to prevent the disclosure of ‘operational details and private information,’ ” Sauber added.

Loudermilk has made a similar ask to the Department of Homeland Security for unredacted, complete transcripts of Secret Service agents who testified to the former select committee that he does not have in his possession.

He has also accused the former chair of the January 6 committee, Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson, of improperly archiving work in a series of letters. Loudermilk raised questions about whether Thompson’s committee improperly coordinated with federal and state prosecutors who have charged Trump with crimes tied to his efforts to overturn the 2020 election because he says that correspondence was not properly archived, according to a letter obtained by CNN. Loudermilk also asked Thompson to provide the passwords to files that he said were uncovered in a “forensic analysis of the archived hard drives” and are password protected.

Thompson has repeatedly defended his panel’s archival process, and said in his most recent letter back to Loudermilk, “the many accusations in your letter are false.”

Thompson pointed to a direct page number in the January 6 select committee’s final report that mentions the sharing of materials with federal and Georgia prosecutors. In response Loudermilk’s accusation about password protected recovered files, Thompson stated, “I have absolutely no idea what you are talking about.”

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