WASHINGTON — Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley said Tuesday that former President Donald Trump attempted to call him on Jan. 6, 2021 but the two were not able to connect.
Hawley said Trump phoned him in the morning before he came to the Capitol. He said he returned the call but didn’t reach the president.
“I didn’t speak to him,” Hawley said. “I next spoke to him on the day Roy Blunt retired.”
Blunt announced he was retiring from the U.S. Senate on March 8, more than eight weeks after Jan. 6.
Hawley’s comment comes after The Washington Post reported that the House of Representatives committee investigating Jan. 6 is missing eight hours of Trump’s call logs. The logs showed that Trump asked the White House switchboard operator to place a call to Hawley at 9:39 a.m.
Hawley was the first senator to say he would object to certification of the presidential election, citing concerns about whether Pennsylvania’s decision to allow mail-in ballots was unconstitutional. The argument was dismissed by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on procedural grounds.
Ultimately eight senators objected to certifying the results from Pennsylvania and Arizona.
In the aftermath of the Jan. 6 insurrection, Hawley briefly became a pariah among some Republicans — both because of his role in leading the objection to Pennsylvania’s ballots and a photo from that day showing him raising his fist to protesters before some of them stormed the Capitol.
Hawley has since started selling campaign materials with the photo.
In text messages that have been released or leaked by the Jan. 6 committee so far, Hawley’s name has not emerged.
At a meeting Monday, the committee recommended that two Trump White House officials, former social media director Dan Scavino Jr. and former trade adviser Peter Navarro, should be held in contempt of Congress for refusing to cooperate. Rep. Liz Cheney, a Republican from Wyoming who serves as co-chair of the panel, said Trump and his team were warned Jan. 6 could turn violent and were repeatedly told that the allegations of widespread voter fraud were not supported by evidence and were insufficient to overturn the election.
“And yet, despite all of these specific warnings, President Trump and his team moved willfully, through multiple means, to attempt to halt the peaceful transfer of power, to halt our constitutional process for counting votes, and to shatter the constitutional bedrock of our great nation,” Cheney said.
Last week, text messages between Ginni Thomas, a conservative activist and the wife of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, and former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows showed that she urged Trump’s staff to attempt to overturn the results of the election, according to the Post.
The revelations quickly launched calls from Democrats and some legal scholars for Thomas to recuse himself from any Jan. 6 cases that come before the U.S. Supreme Court because the personal entanglement may cause the public to question his impartiality.
Hawley this week said those calls were “misogynistic” and said Thomas shouldn’t have to be held accountable for his wife’s text messages. He said Tuesday if a case directly involved whether his wife’s text messages are released he might need to sit out, but that there shouldn’t be a blanket ban on him ruling in cases where Jan. 6 is involved.
“I think that this is an attempt, a very brazen attempt, by the left and Democrats wanting to (a) change the subject from Judge Jackson and (b) to once again go after Justice Thomas, their favorite punching bag,” Hawley said.
Story by Daniel Desrochers and Bryan Lowry, McClatchy Washington Bureau.