A US appeals court on Thursday put on hold a lower court ruling allowing congressional investigators to obtain former president Donald Trump’s White House records relating to the January 6th attack on the US Capitol while he appeals.
Mr Trump’s lawyers had asked the court of appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to sideline the Tuesday decision pending an appeal, which they said could be fast-tracked for a quick ruling.
A three-judge panel of the appeals court scheduled an oral argument for November 30th.
The National Archives, a federal agency that holds Mr Trump’s White House records, had been scheduled to give Congress hundreds of pages on Friday.
US district judge Tanya Chutkan’s decision on Tuesday allowed the House of Representatives committee investigating the riot to access telephone records, visitor logs and other White House documents that Mr Trump wants blocked.
The Republican former president had argued that the materials requested by the committee were covered by a legal doctrine known as executive privilege that protects the confidentiality of some White House communications.
But Judge Chutkan rejected that argument in a clear win for congressional oversight powers.
The committee has said it needs the requested materials to understand the role Mr Trump may have played in fomenting the riot in which his supporters aimed to block politicians from certifying Democrat Joe Biden’s presidential victory.
Four people died on January 6th, one shot dead by police and the other three of natural causes, and more than 100 police officers were injured in the riot. A Capitol police officer who had been attacked by protesters died the next day and four other police officers who defended the Capitol later died by suicide. – Reuters