Former Trump Department of Justice official Jeffrey Clark has postponed his scheduled deposition before the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol due to a medical condition, the committee announced Friday.
Committee spokesperson Tim Mulvey said in a statement that Mr. Clark informed the panel through his lawyer of an ailment “that precludes his participation” in the deposition scheduled for Saturday. Mr. Mulvey said Mr. Clark “provided ample evidence of his claim.”
“Chairman Thompson has agreed to postpone the deposition until December 16th,” Mr. Mulvey said of committee Chairman Rep. Bennie G. Thompson. “Chairman Thompson wishes Mr. Clark well.”
In a last-minute detente on Wednesday as the committee met to vote on holding Mr. Clark in contempt of Congress, Mr. Thompson, Mississippi Democrat, announced that the committee had reached an agreement to allow Mr. Clark to appear for a second deposition.
Mr. Clark had refused to answer questions in a deposition last month in which he cited former President Trump’s claims of executive privilege.
During last month’s appearance, the committee rejected Mr. Clark‘s assertions, and the deposition concluded prematurely after about 90 minutes.
But in a letter to the committee Tuesday, Mr. Clark’s lawyer, Harry W. McDougald, stated that his client now plans to assert his rights against self-incrimination under the Fifth Amendment, in addition to the former president’s claims of privilege.
Mr. Thompson said that while he viewed the request as an attempt to further delay the committee’s proceedings, he nonetheless acquiesced and offered Mr. Clark an opportunity to reappear for a deposition and to assert his Fifth Amendment rights.
At the time, the panel voted to tentatively hold Mr. Clark in contempt, pending his next appearance.
As acting head of the Justice Department‘s civil division, Mr. Clark became a central figure in Mr. Trump’s efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election.