Former White House Staffer Says Trump Encouraged Jan. 6 Riot

June 28, 2022 by Tom Ramstack
Former White House Staffer Says Trump Encouraged Jan. 6 Riot
Cassidy Hutchinson, former aide to Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, testifies as the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol holds a hearing at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, June 28, 2022. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

WASHINGTON — The most condemning testimony yet among six House hearings into the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol came from a Trump White House staff member Tuesday.

Cassidy Hutchinson, a former assistant to the president’s chief of staff, testified that President Donald Trump appeared to encourage the violence at the Capitol, including an effort by rioters to kill the vice president.

As the crowd assembled on the White House Ellipse before Trump’s inflammatory speech where he suggested a march on the Capitol, the former president told the Secret Service to stop using metal detectors to screen the attendees, Hutchinson said.

“I overheard the president say something to the effect, I don’t care if they have weapons,” Hutchinson told the House Select Committee to Investigate the Jan. 6 Attack on the U.S. Capitol.


About the same time, Capitol Police reported observing AR-15 rifles, Glock pistols and improvised weapons on a few members of the mob.

After telling the crowd to march to the Capitol to prevent Congress and Vice President Mike Pence from certifying the 2020 election results, Trump told them, “I’ll be there with you.”

Hutchinson said Trump tried to accompany the mob to the Capitol but that he was prevented by the Secret Service.

At one point, he reached for the steering wheel from a Secret Service agent in his car to force him not to return to the White House, she said. As the Secret Service agents insisted on keeping Trump away from the Capitol, he became enraged and grabbed at the neck of a member of his security staff.

Hutchinson said other White House staff members told her that Trump said, “I’m the f- – -ing president, take me up to the Capitol now.”

At another point, the mob started shouting, “Hang Mike Pence,” as the vice president sought to certify a win of the presidency for Joe Biden.

When Trump’s advisors told him about the threat to Pence and suggested that he tell the mob to leave the Capitol, the former president refused to take action, Hutchinson said.

She quoted her boss, Trump Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, referring to the former president when he said, “He doesn’t want to do anything.”


Trump also reportedly said, “Mike deserves it.”

Hutchinson implied that Trump attorney Rudolph Giuliani might have known an insurrection at the Capitol was coming before Jan. 6. She told about a conversation she had with Giuliani in the parking lot outside the White House.

“Gosh, are you excited for the sixth, it’s going to be a great day,” Hutchinson quoted Giuliani as saying.

When she asked what he meant, she said Giuliani “responded to the effect, we’re going to the Capitol, it’s going to be great.”

Members of the House select committee continued with their words of outrage like in the five previous hearings.

Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., said Trump “could have taken multiple other steps” to stop the violence but refused.

While she praised Hutchinson, she also accused Trump loyalists of trying to intimidate other witnesses. Several members of the Trump administration have ignored or fought subpoenas from the committee.

Cheney said a different witness was told by an unnamed person that Trump “wants me to let you know that he is thinking about you” the day before the witness gave the committee a deposition.

Federal law prohibits intimidation of witnesses.

Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., chairman of the select committee, said, “We’ve shown that this effort was based on a lie, a lie that the election was stolen.”

Another response came in a tweet from Mick Mulvaney, director of the Office of Management and Budget in the Trump administration.


“This is explosive stuff,” Mulvaney said about Hutchinson. “I know her. I don’t think she’s lying.” 

Tom can be reached at [email protected] and @TomRamstack

A+
a-

In The News

Health

Voting

Jan. 6

Giuliani Targeted in Criminal Probe of 2020 Election

ATLANTA (AP) — Rudy Giuliani is a target of the criminal investigation into possible illegal attempts by then-President Donald Trump and others... Read More

ATLANTA (AP) — Rudy Giuliani is a target of the criminal investigation into possible illegal attempts by then-President Donald Trump and others to interfere in the 2020 general election in Georgia, prosecutors informed attorneys for the former New York mayor on Monday. The revelation that Giuliani, an outspoken... Read More

White House Insiders to Talk About Trump's Actions on Jan. 6

WASHINGTON (AP) — Matthew Pottinger was a journalist in China, concerned about the country's drift toward authoritarianism, when he decided... Read More

WASHINGTON (AP) — Matthew Pottinger was a journalist in China, concerned about the country's drift toward authoritarianism, when he decided — at age 31 — to enlist in the U.S. Marines after the invasion of Iraq. “Our form of government is not inevitable," Pottinger recalled thinking... Read More

Luria, Kinzinger Put Careers on Line in Jan. 6 Investigation

WASHINGTON (AP) — Reps. Elaine Luria and Adam Kinzinger, who will lead questioning in the closing summer hearing of the Jan. 6 committee... Read More

WASHINGTON (AP) — Reps. Elaine Luria and Adam Kinzinger, who will lead questioning in the closing summer hearing of the Jan. 6 committee on Thursday night, are from different parties but agree emphatically on one thing: The investigation into the deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol is worth sacrificing their political... Read More

Capitol Riot Hearings Raise Questions of Presidential Power

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House Jan. 6 committee’s investigation of the aftermath of the 2020 presidential election and the events leading up... Read More

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House Jan. 6 committee’s investigation of the aftermath of the 2020 presidential election and the events leading up to the U.S. Capitol insurrection is raising questions about former President Donald Trump’s role and whether he committed crimes. The various schemes and talking points that witnesses have revealed also highlight... Read More

July 13, 2022
by Tom Ramstack
Congress Implicates Trump in Inciting Mob Violence at Capitol

WASHINGTON — Witnesses to a congressional committee on Tuesday implicated former President Donald Trump in knowingly inciting extremists to attack... Read More

WASHINGTON — Witnesses to a congressional committee on Tuesday implicated former President Donald Trump in knowingly inciting extremists to attack the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. Part of the incitement came from his huge social media following, which he used to summon a mob to march... Read More

Jan. 6 Panel Probes Trump's 'Siren Call' to Extremists

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Jan. 6 committee is set to highlight the way violent far-right extremists answered Donald Trump’s “siren call” to... Read More

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Jan. 6 committee is set to highlight the way violent far-right extremists answered Donald Trump’s “siren call” to come to Washington for a big rally, as some now face rare sedition charges over the deadly U.S. Capitol attack and effort to overturn the 2020 presidential election.... Read More

News From The Well
scroll top