Former Chief of Staff Mark Meadows talks Jan. 6, select committee and Trump's future
President Donald Trump’s fourth Chief of Staff Mark Meadows has opened up about what took place during his year in the White House, whether he'll cooperate with the congressional Jan. 6 investigation and what he thinks the future holds for president Donald Trump.
“I feel like there were so many from the left who were writing stories about President Trump, who candidly, were not present in the room,” Meadows told The Christian Post in a video interview on his new book, The Chief of Cheifs, released Tuesday.
Meadows, who served as a member of U.S. Congress from North Carolina for nearly seven years, sat down for an interview last week in which he discussed whether he would agree to testify before the U.S. House of Representatives select committee on the storming on the U.S. Capitol last Jan. 6.
Due to the executive privilege invoked by President Trump, the complex legal discussions were things he was unable to discuss. He did say that he was working with the committee on a number of accommodations. But on Tuesday, Meadows declared that he is no longer cooperating with the select committee's probe, saying the committee intended to ask questions he considered "executive privilege."
"These are obviously complex legal discussions. When it comes to the executive privilege that President Trump has claimed, that is not something that I can give up," Meadows told CP. "That is not my privilege to give up."
Meadows said that he does mention the events of Jan. 6 in his book, but it's not a major focus.
“You can’t talk about the last year and not mention the January 6th incident,” the 62-year-old said. “However, spending as much time on January 6th as some of my Democrat colleagues in Congress are does not portray the right decision. I think the breach of the Capitol security came as a surprise to everyone in the West Wing. I know that many on the left want to suggest otherwise. But that is not the case. We talk about that, but that is not the main focus of the book.”
“I am not aware of anybody that had any advanced knowledge of a breach of security and what ultimately happened on January 6th that it was going to happen,” he said. “Many of us believed that this was President Trump’s last address to a number of supporters that was going to happen while he was president, knowing that January 20 was right around the corner. As that happened, I think a lot of us look back, and certainly, we don’t condone what happened as it relates to the breach of security there, and, in fact, condemn that. That shouldn’t have happened.”
Meadows said his time serving as the chief of staff was the "hardest job" he's ever had.
“It was an honor of a lifetime to serve as the 45th President’s chief of staff. It was also the hardest job I have ever done,” he said. “President Trump would call at all hours of the morning and night because he didn’t sleep much. Because he didn’t sleep much meant that I didn’t sleep much. He was all about trying to get things done .”
Meadows said his time in the White House — March 2020 to January 2021 — is something he does not regret and would do again.
Meadows offered his thoughts about Trump’s future, sharing informally that he believes Trump will run for president in 2024.
“Do I believe that he would run again now? I want to make sure I am clear with this. I do not work for the president, so I do not speak on his behalf. I do talk to him a lot. I believe he is going to run,” Meadows said.
“He is putting together a team that will address that. And so, for those that are cheering on the fact that they want him to run again, they’ll be happy. For those that don’t want him to run again, they will be disappointed. Serving our country is a great honor and serving him, so prayerfully, I would … be honored if he would ask me again. Yet at the same time, knowing that it’s the hardest job that I’ve had, I would want to make sure that he’s got the best people around.”
For Meadows, the chief of staff role was one that he enjoyed and he believes he served the president and God well.
“Yeah, it was a busy year, but when I thought about our heavenly Father, it was all about honoring Him,” he said.