U.S. House Jan. 6 committee subpoenas former Michigan GOP Chair Laura Cox

Craig Mauger
The Detroit News

Lansing — The U.S. House committee that's investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, riot has issued a subpoena to former Michigan Republican Party Chairwoman Laura Cox, the panel announced Tuesday.

In a press release, the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol said Cox was one of six people receiving new subpoenas. The individuals had knowledge of efforts to submit false certificates saying then-President Donald Trump won battleground states or "to otherwise delay or interfere with the certification of the legitimate 2020 election results," the release said.

"We’re seeking records and testimony from former campaign officials and other individuals in various states who we believe have relevant information about the planning and implementation of those plans," said U.S. Rep. Bennie Thompson, a Democrat from Mississippi and the committee's chairman.

MI GOP Chairwoman Laura Cox makes remarks.

"The select committee has heard from more than 550 witnesses, and we expect these six individuals to cooperate as well as we work to tell the American people the full story about the violence of January 6th and its causes," Thompson added.

The committee has been probing efforts to overturn Michigan's 2020 presidential election, including the actions of 16 Michigan Republicans who signed and submitted a false certificate claiming to be the state's official electors.

Democrat Joe Biden won Michigan by 154,000 votes or 3 percentage points.

In January, the committee issued subpoenas to two of the 16 Michigan GOP electors, Kathy Berden and Mayra Rodriguez, and 12 similar electors from other states.

Cox, a former state representative, was the party's chairwoman when the Michigan "alternate" electors met on Dec. 14, 2020, inside Republican Party headquarters to sign the certificate.

The Trump supporters who signed the document, including current Michigan Republican Party Co-Chairwoman Meshawn Maddock, inaccurately claimed they were the "duly elected and qualified electors," according to their certificate.

They sent the certificate to the National Archives as part of an attempt in multiple states to impede Biden's victory before the country's electoral votes were counted and certified during a joint session of Congress on Jan. 6, 2021.

According to a letter from Thompson to Cox on Tuesday, the committee wants her to produce certain documents by March 1 and appear for a deposition on March 8. The letter referenced comments made by Trump's personal attorney Rudy Giuliani when he traveled to Michigan on Dec. 2, 2020, for a Michigan House Oversight Committee hearing on the election.

Giuliani also did an event with Cox that day and argued the "attempted" certification of Michigan's election was a criminal act because it contained a false statement in the form of "false" votes.

"You reportedly were a witness when Rudy Giuliani pressured state lawmakers to disregard election results in Michigan and when he said that certifying the election results would be a 'criminal act,'" Thompson's letter said. "We would like to better understand these and other statements and events that you witnessed or in which you participated, and communications we believe you may have had with national, state and local officials about the results of the November 2020 election."

Ron Weiser, a University of Michigan board regent and longtime Republican donor, defeated Cox in a race to become the Michigan GOP's current chair in February 2021.

In addition to Cox, the select committee issued subpoenas to officials in Arizona and Pennsylvania, two other battleground states, and Michael Roman and Gary Michael Brown, who led Election Day Operations for Trump's campaign.