Steve Bannon’s contempt of Congress conviction upheld by federal appeals court

WASHINGTON — Steve Bannon, who served as an adviser to former President Donald Trump, was rightfully convicted of contempt of Congress charges in 2022 for failing to respond to a subpoena, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled Friday.

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In 2022, a jury found Bannon guilty of failing to comply with the subpoena from the House select committee that was investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol. He had been ordered to testify and provide documents, and declined to do either.

Bannon argued that he did not respond to the subpoena on the advice of his attorney, a defense that the federal appellate court found amounted to “no defense at all.” Bannon has repeatedly argued that he believed Trump planned to invoke executive privilege.

In a 20-page opinion filed Friday, the court upheld Bannon’s conviction.

“As both this court and the Supreme Court have repeatedly explained, a contrary rule would contravene the text of the contempt statute and hamstring Congress’s investigatory authority,” Judge Brad Garcia wrote in the opinion. “Because we have no basis to depart from that binding precedent, and because none of Bannon’s other challenges to his convictions have merit, we affirm.”

The court gave Bannon seven days to ask the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to reconsider the case, meaning he will not be required to immediately report to jail, The Washington Post reported. He could also petition the U.S. Supreme Court for a review, according to NBC News.

In March, former Trump trade adviser Peter Navarro began a four-month prison sentence after a jury convicted him of two counts of contempt of Congress for defying a subpoena from the same House select committee.

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