Steve Bannon, the former Trump White House adviser, has filed an opposition to the U.S. district court’s standard protective order for discovery, which prohibits either side from releasing documents or evidence publicly.
Bannon, 67, pleaded not guilty last week to contempt-of-Congress charges, and his legal team previously argued that the case would be more complicated by agreeing to the prosecution’s protective order for discovery.
“Members of the public should make their own independent judgment as to whether the U.S. Department of Justice is committed to a just result based upon all the facts,” said a statement provided to The Washington Post on behalf of Bannon. “In the opposition filed today, Mr. Bannon asked the judge to follow the normal process and allow unfettered access to and use of the documents.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Amanda Vaughn has said that there are “less than 20 documents” to be provided, but Bannon attorney Evan Corcoran told reporters that there was probably going to be a need for the defense to locate more documents and witnesses.
Bannon’s legal team argued that the government offered little reason the documents should be withheld from public view, adding that many of the documents that would be restricted by the proposed protective order in this case are already public.
“The Government offered no reason why it wanted to limit Mr. Bannon’s attorneys in their use of the documents to prepare a defense,” Bannon’s statement said.
Bannon has refused to comply with an order from the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol to provide records and testimony about his actions leading up to the attack. The committee is interested in questioning Bannon about activities at the Willard hotel in the week leading up to Jan. 6.