Bannon Sentenced for Contempt of Congress
In 2021, the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 attack subpoenaed Steve Bannon to testify. The former advisor to President Donald Trump refused and also declined to provide documents to the committee. The Department of Justice (DOJ) elected to prosecute him for contempt of Congress, and a jury found him guilty in July. He has now been sentenced for the crime.
On Friday, October 21, a judge for the US District Court for the District of Columbia sentenced the radio host to four months imprisonment and a $6,500 fine.
In advance of the ruling, Bannon’s attorneys filed a sentencing memorandum with the court, raising their concerns that the Select Committee and the DOJ unfairly targeted their client because his boss, former President Trump, claimed executive privilege. However, since the radio host was not a government employee at the time of the attack, he didn’t qualify for that assertion. Further, President Joe Biden has waived executive privilege of the documents related to the events of that day. Former presidents cannot legally assert privilege.
Bannon’s legal team argued for a term of probation as an appropriate sentence, but the judge agreed with the prosecution’s position that the law in question carried a mandatory minimum sentence of one month in jail. Because he plans to appeal the conviction, the judge ruled the conservative could remain free while the process runs its course.