General Michael Flynn has filed a motion to quash a subpoena issued by the House Select Committee to Investigate the Attack on the United States Capitol on January 6th. He also filed a request for a preliminary injunction and a temporary restraining order against Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.
All nine members of the Select Committee were identified as defendants in the complaint, whereas Pelosi was designated as the only defendant in the motion. Flynn was briefly in the administration of former President Donald Trump for a few weeks before resigning on February 13, 2017.
However, the House committee investigating the events of January 6 has surprisingly focused on Flynn. Flynn was served with a subpoena in November, requiring him to give over papers and attend a deposition.
“By November 23, 2021, the Subpoena ordered General Flynn to deliver records in answer to twenty broad and imprecise demands spanning a year and a half. It also ordered General Flynn to attend a deposition on December 6, 2021, according to the lawsuit.
The lawsuit said that on Jan. 6 (and at all times relevant to the subpoena and committee inquiry), Gen. Flynn was a private citizen who had personal questions and opinions about the 2020 election’s legitimacy — but that was not a crime, according to the complaint.
“It is not a criminal to have such opinions, whether true or incorrect, to discuss them with others, to socialize with individuals who share such beliefs, or to petition the government to address such political problems,” according to the submission.
Flynn expressed reservations about the subpoena. The committee, on the other hand, “obstinately refused to give any clarification or cooperation to settle these difficulties,” according to the complaint. According to the lawsuit, the committee has been hurrying to report any non-cooperative witnesses to the Department of Justice for criminal prosecution for contempt of Congress.
“As a result, General Flynn is trapped between two options, both of which risk criminal prosecution by the Department of Justice, either as part of an ongoing criminal investigation or as part of a new prosecution for contempt of Congress,” according to the brief. The complaint questioned the constitutionality of Flynn’s subpoena in general.
Flynn’s complaint asks the House committee for declaratory and injunctive relief, which would prevent the subpoena from being enforced. Separately, Flynn filed a request seeking a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction against Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi alone. The motion claimed that Flynn had no role in planning, speaking at, or participating in the Jan. 6 demonstrations, protests, or incursions and that the subpoena is also an affront to Flynn’s constitutional rights.
In addition to interactions with government officials, the subpoena wants documents of General Flynn’s discussions concerning the 2020 election, as well as the foundation for his ideas and the people with whom he engaged.
As a result, it is a direct attack on his First Amendment rights to freedom of expression, association, and petition,” according to the motion. It also claimed that the subpoena will violate his 5th Amendment rights because “the records and testimony seek to undermine General Flynn’s protection against compelled self-incrimination under the Fifth Amendment.”
The motion also claimed that the committee’s decision to issue the subpoena was erroneous. It was issued “not for a lawful legislative purpose, but rather for the partisan harassment of a person because he has political beliefs the Select Committee dislikes,” according to the committee’s own authorizing resolution.
If granted, the temporary restraining order would prevent Flynn from giving a deposition or providing records. Pelosi would also be barred from enforcing the challenged subpoenas or utilizing any records collected as a result of them.
Following any appropriate briefing or hearing, Flynn’s motion urged that if the temporary restraining order is granted, it be turned into a preliminary injunction. This would effectively stop Pelosi and the select committee from implementing the subpoenas, thereby shutting down the Flynn inquiry.