The House select committee investigating January 6 has reached out to Chad Wolf and Ken Cuccinelli, two top officials from the Trump-era Department of Homeland Security, asking that they voluntarily speak with the panel, CNN has learned.
Cuccinelli said he has been asked to meet with investigators but he has not yet engaged in a discussion with the committee. A source familiar with the probe said that Wolf, who was acting secretary until he resigned in January, also has been contacted. CNN has reached out to Wolf for comment.
The committee has not issued a subpoena for Cuccinelli or Wolf at this time. They are the first known DHS officials to have been contacted by the committee.
The panel could be interested in speaking with Wolf and Cuccinelli about any influence the White House or others acting in concert with the White House may have exerted on DHS leadership and its agencies as part of a push to overturn the 2020 election results.
In December 2020, The New York Times first reported that Trump’s former attorney Rudy Giuliani called Cuccinelli, second in command at DHS at the time, and asked him whether the department could seize voting machines in certain states to be reexamined for evidence of widespread voter fraud.
At the time, it was unclear if Trump facilitated the call between Giuliani and Cuccinelli.
Cuccinelli told CNN on Tuesday that he did tell Giuliani the department had no legal authority to seize voting machines or interfere with state-run elections. Cuccinelli also said that “no one at any level pushed us to do anything outside of our existing mission sets.”
A spokesperson for the House select committee declined to comment on any contact with Wolf and Cuccinelli.
On the afternoon of January 6, Cuccinelli tweeted: “For months over the summer we rightly condemned Antifa for storming federal buildings in Portland. If you are entering the Capitol Building against police orders, you must leave. There is a proper venue to resolve grievances. This is not it.”
DHS had set up a virtual situation room on January 6 to “facilitate department and interagency communication and coordination as we do for many large events in DC,” then-DHS spokesperson Alexei Woltornist said at the time.
DHS does not have jurisdiction over the security of the US Capitol but is responsible for security of some federal facilities in DC and for responding to calls for assistance from other law enforcement agencies.
The select committee has already subpoenaed several former Trump officials, including former chief of staff Mark Meadows, and is seeking voluntary cooperation from others. At least five former Trump administration staffers have voluntarily spoken with the committee, CNN reported Tuesday.
The committee is seeking to determine what Trump, Republican members of Congress and Trump’s advisers did and said behind closed doors about overturning the results of the 2020 election before January 6.
On Friday, the panel is expected to hear from Jeffrey Clark, a former Justice Department official who emerged as a central player in Trump’s two-month-long effort to overturn the vote in key states – and as one of the officials who were in direct contact with Trump.