Perry’s assertion didn’t element what the FBI needed from his cellphone, however he has been a determine of curiosity to congressional investigators probing Trump’s effort to overturn the 2020 election. Perry, a key ally in that effort, pressed Trump to interchange Justice Division leaders and set up a little-known official, Jeffrey Clark, atop the division. Clark had signaled help for Trump’s effort to name on state legislatures to reconvene and take into account appointing “alternate” electors to swing the end result towards Trump.
The Jan. 6 choose panel subpoenaed Perry in Might, however he has disregarded the summons.
The Justice Division’s curiosity in Perry might relate to the Jan. 6, 2021, assault on the Capitol, however it could additionally intersect with the probe of Trump’s dealing with of White Home data. The Jan. 6 committee revealed in April that Perry and Trump’s final chief of workers, Mark Meadows, communicated by the encrypted messaging app Sign about issues related to the 2020 election — and it’s unclear whether or not both man retained these messages.
Equally, the choose committee acquired testimony that Meadows burned sure papers after assembly within the White Home with Perry. Meadows was a founding member of the pro-Trump Freedom Caucus, of which Perry is now the chair.
The FBI’s confiscation of Perry’s cellphone will not be with out latest precedent. Authorities seized the cellphone of Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) in 2020 as a part of an investigation into his stock-trading practices, although the Justice Division later ended its probe with out pursuing any expenses towards him. However Burr nonetheless stepped down from his chairmanship of the Senate Intelligence Committee amid the controversy and introduced he wouldn’t search reelection to his Senate seat.