Jeffrey Clark, mastermind of coup attempt, deserves prosecution, not immunity
Of all the Jan. 6 committee’s witnesses, Jeffrey Clark is a relatively big fish.
The select committee investigating the deadly Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol may be considering immunity for former Department of Justice official Jeffrey Clark. Clark invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination over 100 times during his committee appearance last week. On Feb. 3, Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif., a member of the select committee, called Clark’s testimony “disappointing” and told CNN that one option the committee needs to look at was offering Clark something lawyers call “use immunity.” That would be a bad idea for at least three reasons.
First, Clark is a relatively big fish in the ocean of people already called before the select committee. Clark was the acting head of DOJ’s Civil Division during former President Donald Trump’s waning weeks in office, and he served under then-acting Attorney General Jeffrey A. Rosen. A New York Times piece succinctly sets out what Clark, described by the newspaper as an “unassuming lawyer,” is alleged to have done during Trump’s final days: “force Georgia state lawmakers to overturn its presidential election results.” According to that report, “because Mr. Rosen had refused the president’s entreaties to carry out those plans, Mr. Trump was about to decide whether to fire Mr. Rosen and replace him with Mr. Clark.”