Gohmert Gives Take on Navarro Indictment: 'You Can't Even Lie to Congress'

Representative Louie Gohmert decried the indictment of a former Trump White House advisor, complaining that Republicans "can't even lie to Congress or lie to an FBI agent or they're coming after you."

The Texas Republican made the remarks Friday during an appearance on Newsmax, reacting to Peter Navarro's indictment for refusing to appear before the House committee investigating the January 6 Capitol insurrection. Gohmert follows other Republicans who've called the investigation biased, but seemed to take the criticism even further.

Navarro, an advisor to former President Donald Trump, on Friday was indicted by a federal grand jury on two counts of contempt of Congress over his stonewalling of the committee.

"It actually puts an exclamation point on the fact that we have a two-tiered justice system," Gohmert said on Newsmax, arguing there is a double standard at play for Democrats and Republicans.

Representative Louie Gohmert at News Conference
GOP Representative Louie Gohmert of Texas denounced the contempt of Congress citations facing Peter Navarro, former adviser to ex-President Donald Trump. Above, Gohmert speaks at a news conference outside the U.S. Capitol on April 27, 2022. STEFANI REYNOLDS/Getty Images

Michael Sussmann, a lawyer whose firm represented Hillary Clinton's 2016 presidential campaign, this week was found not guilty of lying to the FBI in the first trial of special counsel John Durham's three-year investigation.

Durham in 2019 was appointed to oversee the probe into whether the government inappropriately collected intelligence on Trump's 2016 campaign. Sussmann's acquittal enraged Trump and Republicans complained of a double standard.

Gohmert took the talking point further, saying Sussmann was acquitted by a jury "that had a bunch of Hillary Clinton lovers on it" who were willing to excuse his alleged lying.

Being convicted of lying to Congress or the FBI can carry up to five years in prison. But Gohmert suggested the consequences Republicans could face for the offense were unfair.

"They're going to bury you," said Gohmert. "They're going to put you in the D.C. jail, and terrorize and torture you and not live up to the Constitution."

Gohmert also brought up past accusations that former CIA head John Brennan and ex-director of national intelligence James Clapper lied to Congress without facing any accountability.

The House January 6 committee in recent months has turned its attention to how Trump and members of his inner circle might have abused their power in an attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.

In February, the committee subpoenaed Navarro, seeking records and testimony from the former White House trade advisor who publicly embraced Trump's baseless claims of a rigged election. Trump's allegations of voter fraud were rejected more than 60 times by courts across the country, including the U.S. Supreme Court.

The House voted in April to refer the contempt citations to the Justice Department. Republican Representative Liz Cheney, the January 6 committee's vice-chair, said at the time that Navarro would be a key witness for the investigation, pointing out that he wrote a book "boasting about his role in planning and coordinating the activity of January 6th."

Each count of contempt of Congress carries a minimum of 30 days in jail and a maximum of one year, in addition to a fine of up to $10,000, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Newsweek has reached out to Gohmert for comment.