Steven Bannon has been sentenced to four months in prison and ordered to pay a $6,500 for criminal contempt of Congress after refusing to comply with a subpoena issued by the Jan. 6 committee.
Judge Carl Nichols, who was appointed by former President Donald Trump, said on Friday that Bannon “has expressed no remorse” before slapping him with the prison term. “The Jan. 6 committee has every right to investigate what happened that day,” Nichols continued, noting that Bannon “has not provided a single document” or “testimony on any topic,” and that “others must be deterred from committing similar crimes.”
The Justice Department was seeking six months and a $200,000 fine for Bannon for, as prosecutors wrote in a sentencing memo filed on Monday “sustained, bad-faith contempt of Congress.” They added that “a person could have shown no greater contempt than the Defendant did in his defiance of the Committee’s subpoena.”
Nichols said on Friday that Bannon will not have to serve his prison term until after he appeals, and that he will be allowed to “voluntarily surrender.” Bannon and his lawyers indicated outside the courtroom that they do indeed plan to appeal, with Bannon ranting about the “illegitimate Biden regime.”
Bannon was found guilty of two counts of contempt of Congress in July after having been charged last November following his refusal to comply with a subpoena issued by the Jan. 6 committee. The committee called the conviction a “victory for the rule of law,” adding that, “as prosecutor stated, Steve Bannon ‘chose allegiance to Donald Trump over compliance with the law.’”
Last week, during what was likely its final public hearing, the committee played audio of Bannon discussing Trump’s plan to declare himself the winner of the 2020 election, regardless of the results. “What Trump’s gonna do, is he’s going to declare victory,” Bannon told a group of associates prior to the election. “That doesn’t mean he’s the winner. He’s just going to say he’s the winner.”
The committee also played footage of Bannon saying on his podcast on Jan. 5 that “all hell is going to break loose tomorrow,” and that “it’s not going to happen like you think it’s going to happen.”
It goes without saying that Bannon would have been a person the committee would have liked to hear from under oath. He refused to talk to them, though, and now he’s going to jail for it. Bannon doesn’t seem to care.