4 min read

Surprise Jan. 6 Hearing Provides Stunning Testimony

During an unexpected public hearing, former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson provides dramatic testimony about Donald Trump's actions on January 6.
Surprise Jan. 6 Hearing Provides Stunning Testimony

In explosive public testimony, a former White House aide told the January 6 committee that Donald Trump knowingly directed armed supporters to march to the US Capitol in a last-gasp effort to remain in power, reports The Guardian.

Cassidy Hutchinson, a former aide to Trump’s final chief of staff, Mark Meadows, painted a devastating portrait of a raging president spiraling out of control and a White House often too ambivalent to constrain him.

Ex-White House aide delivers explosive public testimony to January 6 panel (The Guardian)

Embed from Getty Images

"Never before in American history have we ever seen credible testimony this shocking against a president of the United States before Congress," Michael Beschloss, a presidential historian, told the MSNBC network. "This is a day that is going to loom very large in American history."

Angry, violent, reckless: testimony paints shocking portrait of Trump (The Guardian)

Embed from Getty Images

According to Tom Nichols from The Atlantic, Hutchinson’s testimony gives us the last pieces we needed to see the full picture of the most important story in modern presidential history. In six simple steps, here is what we now know so far from the January 6 committee, capped by Hutchinson’s testimony.

  1. Trump knew—or refused to hear—that he did not win in November 2020.
  2. Trump directed his loyalists to launch a barrage of schemes to invalidate the vote in multiple states.
  3. Trump tried to capture the Justice Department as part of his plan to overturn the election (and he nearly succeeded).
  4. Trump on January 6 aimed a violent crowd at his own vice president and the members of the Congress of the United States.
  5. Trump knew that this crowd was armed and dangerous.
  6. Trump wanted to personally lead the mob to stop the Congress from meeting and thus end the threat to his continued rule as president.

We Now Know (The Atlantic)

Excerpt from The Atlantic: From practically the moment he descended the escalator at Trump Tower in 2015, Trump’s supporters have been in denial about Trump’s emotional instability, his malignant narcissism, his fascination with violent rhetoric, and his hostility to the American constitutional order. But without a peek behind the Oval Office curtains, suspicions were only conjecture. We didn’t know for certain if Trump, after he lost in 2020, was trying to subvert the vote or seeking only to exhaust all his legal remedies. We didn’t know if he truly understood that the mob on January 6 he’d summoned was armed and dangerous. We didn’t know if he actually agreed with the chants to hang Mike Pence. We now know.
Embed from Getty Images

In a related story, the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection issued a subpoena Wednesday evening to former White House counsel Pat Cipollone after blockbuster testimony from a former aide identified the lawyer as having firsthand knowledge of potential criminal activity in the Trump White House, reports The Washington Post.

"In the weeks since, the Select Committee has continued to obtain evidence about which you are uniquely positioned to testify; unfortunately, however, you have declined to cooperate with us further, including by providing on-the-record testimony. We are left with no choice but to issue you this subpoena," wrote Thompson.

Jan. 6 committee subpoenas former White House counsel Pat Cipollone (The Washington Post)

Excerpt from The Washington Post: The decision followed extensive negotiations between Cipollone and the committee, as well as sharply escalating pressure on him in recent days to come forward and testify. Committee members have come to believe that the former counsel’s testimony could be critical to their investigation, given his proximity to Donald Trump and presence during key moments before, during and after the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. The subpoena is likely to trigger a lengthy legal battle.
Embed from Getty Images

And in another related story, a recent poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research says about half of Americans believe former President Donald Trump should be charged with a crime for his role in the U.S. Capitol attack on Jan. 6, 2021, reports the Associated Press.

About half say Trump should be charged for 1/6: AP-NORC poll (Associated Press)

Excerpt from the Associated Press: The survey finds that 48% of U.S. adults say the Republican former president should be charged with a crime for his role, while 31% say he should not be charged. An additional 20% say they don’t know enough to have an opinion. Fifty-eight percent say Trump bears a great deal or quite a bit of responsibility for what happened that day. The poll was conducted after five public hearings by the House committee investigating Jan. 6, which has sought to paint Trump’s potential criminal culpability in the events that led to deadly insurrection. But it was taken before Tuesday’s surprise hearing featuring former Trump White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson. Her explosive testimony provided the most compelling evidence yet that the former president could be linked to a federal crime, experts say.
Embed from Getty Images

Jump to this week's edition of:
World News
US News
Special Report