Washington – Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan ordered a temporary pause on a subpoena on Wednesday night – Issued bychecking — for the phone records of Kelly Ward, President of the Arizona Republican Party.
In his order, Kagan stayed the October 22 decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, which allowed the January 6 House Committee to obtain the record, “subordinate or pending further order of the court.”
Ward’s lawyers and the Jan. 6 committee have a deadline of 5 p.m. ET Friday to file a response to Kagan’s order.
In an emergency request to Kagan, which oversees applications to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, Ward argued that the summons from the House panel is “the first of its kind” that includes a request for phone records from a state. . The chair of the party was sought by a Congress Committee, composed mainly of members of the rival party.
“If Dr. Ward’s telephone and text message records are exposed, congressional investigators are going to contact everyone who communicated with him during and shortly after the 2020 election. This is not speculation. “That is certain. There is no other reason for the committee to seek this information,” Ward’s lawyers wrote. “There may be no greater chill on public participation in partisan politics than a call, visit or summons from federal investigators.”
The committee issued a subpoena in January to Ward’s phone provider T-Mobile, demanding call records, phone numbers, text messages and IP addresses that communicated with Ward’s number after the 2020 election. Arizona GOP chair was among a group of peopleA slate of so-called alternative voters cast electoral votes for Trump, who lost the state to President Biden.
But Ward filed a request in federal court to have the summons quashed, and the committee called on the court to dismiss the case several months later. After the district court accepted the House investigators’ request, Ward turned to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. However, the California-based appeals court upheld the lower court’s decision that had allowed the House committee to access the records.
In a Supreme Court filing, Ward said his case “has profound retrospective implications for future congressional investigations and political union rights under the First Amendment,” especially given the events involved: 2020 President Elections and the January 6 attack on the Capitol.
While the select committee “doesn’t meet the sentence,” Ward argued, turning phone records into the panel risks exposing those he was exposed to congressional or federal investigations as well as public criticism.
“The sentencing process in a case like this is; the harm comes from the fear that your views will be exposed, that you may be the next person expecting government investigators to knock on your door, and that you may need to Face the disastrous personal and financial consequences of retaining counsel for political affiliations and responding to opinions and appearing before the committee,” Ward told the Supreme Court. “It sets a terrible precedent for the future of public participation in American politics.”
Ward is the latest Republican to ask the Supreme Court to intervene in matters stemming from the investigation into the events surrounding the January 6 attack on the US Capitol.
Trump last year asked the High Court to block the National Archives and Records Administration from turning over his White House records to a House panel, which the judges refused to do, and GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina asked the court to temporarily asked to keep them. Testifying before a Georgia Grand Jury.
Justice Clarence Thomas on MondayA lower court order that required him to answer questions before a grand jury that is investigating attempts to reverse the outcome of the 2020 election in Georgia.