FBI Seizes Phone of PA Rep. Scott Perry, Trump Ally
On Tuesday, August 9, Rep. Scott Perry of Pennsylvania said that FBI agents seized his phone.
While the motivation for the seizure is unclear, it is likely related to Perry’s January 6th involvement and attempts to overturn the 2020 election.
Perry was subpoenaed by the House January 6th Committee in May, but has yet to agree to testify.
Who is Scott Perry?
Scott Perry is the Republican House representative for Pennsylvania’s 10th congressional district, which includes Harrisburn, York, and their suburbs. He has served the district since 2013.
Perry was elected chairman of the House Freedom Caucus in November 2021, a pro-Trump caucus founded by former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows.
Perry is up for reelection in November after winning an uncontested Republican primary in May.
Perry’s Phone Seized by FBI
On August 9, Perry confirmed that the FBI seized his phone for investigation.
“This morning, while traveling with my family, 3 FBI agents visited me and seized my cell phone,” the Pennsylvania Republican said in a statement issued through his office on August 9.
Perry’s Efforts to Overturn the 2020 Election
Perry is a top ally of former President Donald Trump, and was involved in Trump’s effort to overturn the 2020 election. He encouraged Trump to replace top Justice Department leaders after losing the 2020 election and to install Jeffrey Clark as the Attorney General. Clark, an environmental lawyer largely considered to be unqualified for the role, had indicated that he would support Trump’s efforts to overturn the election results by calling on state legislatures to appoint “alternate” electors in Trump’s favor.
Testimony and documents found during the January 6 Committee’s investigation showed Perry to be the first person to connect Trump with Jeffrey Clark, who Trump came close to appointing.
It is unclear whether the FBI’s reason for investigating Perry is related to January 6th and attempts to overturn the election, or if it is related to the investigation of Trump’s handling of White House records which led to the execution of a search warrant on his Mar-a-Lago estate on August 8.
In April, the January 6th Committee revealed that Perry had communicated with Trump’s chief of staff Mark Meadows about the 2020 election, and made an effort to conceal some of their communications by using the encrypted messaging app Signal. Further, former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson revealed in her testimony to the committee that Meadows burned papers in his office after a meeting with Perry.
Scott Perry Asked for a Presidential Pardon
According to testimony from Cassidy Hutchinson, Perry was among a group of House Republicans who reached out to Trump for a presidential pardon related to their roles in attempting to overturn the 2020 election results.
Perry was also part of a group of House Republicans subpoenaed by the House January 6th Committee, which included Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and fellow Freedom Caucus leader Rep. Jim Jordan. Perry has thus far refused to comply with the subpoena.