A federal judge ordered a conservative law professor to turn over 100 documents to a Congressional committee investigating the attack on the U.S. Capitol, and justified the ruling by saying the professor and former President Donald Trump had launched a campaign to overturn a democratic election.
U.S. District Judge David O. Carter of Los Angeles said Monday in a court filing it was more likely than not that Trump corruptly sought to obstruct Congress on the day it was certifying the 2020 presidential election in favor of Joe Biden, relying on legal guidance from John Eastman, the former dean of Chapman University law school in southern California. The illegality of the plan was obvious, the judge wrote.
The ruling came in a lawsuit filed by Eastman in an effort to block the House committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, riot from obtaining his e-mails. Eastman claimed privilege over 111 documents, but the judge found just 10 of them could be withheld. Trump is not a party to the case.
Their campaign was not confined to the ivory tower — it was a coup in search of a legal theory, the judge wrote. If Dr. Eastman and President Trumps plan had worked, it would have permanently ended the peaceful transition of power, undermining American democracy and the Constitution. If the country does not commit to investigating and pursuing accountability for those responsible, the Court fears January 6 will repeat itself.