The ruling came in an unsigned, one-paragraph order. Justice Clarence Thomas, a staunch conservative, was alone in indicating that he would have granted Trump’s request.
The move clears the way for congressional investigators to receive a batch of Trump-era schedules, call logs, emails and other requested documents that the committee says could illuminate key circumstances surrounding the deadly Capitol riot.
The order leaves intact a lower federal appeals court ruling that found Trump’s assertion of executive privilege and other legal theories unpersuasive in light of President Biden’s refusal to invoke privilege, as well as the House panel’s pressing task.
The justices wrote that although the unprecedented dispute between a former president and lawmakers raised “serious and substantial concerns,” the Washington, D.C.,-based federal appeals court had suitably analyzed the issues at hand.
“Because the Court of Appeals concluded that President Trump’s claims would have failed even if he were the incumbent, his status as a former President necessarily made no difference to the court’s decision,” the court wrote.
Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who concurred with the majority’s ruling, wrote separately to note his disagreement with part of the lower appeals court’s reasoning and its prospective legal weight.
Thomas, the lone dissenter, did not explain the source of his disagreement.
Trump turned to the Supreme Court last month after lower federal courts rejected his request to halt the National Archives from passing along his administration’s records. His attorneys had asked the justices to shield the disputed materials from disclosure while they considered his formal appeal, a request Wednesday’s ruling rebuffed.
The Jan. 6 committee has not established a hard deadline for completing its investigation, but its chairman, Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), has said the panel hopes to wrap up by early spring.
This is a developing story, check back for updates.